“You could expose yourself to enormous risks”

“You could expose yourself to enormous risks”

WATER security chiefs have issued a warning ahead of the June Bank Holiday weekend.

Water Safety Ireland, the Coast Guard and the RNLI have joined together to encourage families to be more careful when walking the coast or engaging in water activities.

People are encouraged to be safer on the coast over the bank holiday weekend.Credit: Getty Images-Getty

As the weather improves and the evenings become brighter, more people will return to the water for activities such as swimming and surfing.

Agencies are urging people to be cautious before planning a trip to the coast or anywhere there is a large body of water.

The public is urged to check weather conditions and tide times before heading out, always ensure they have a way to call for help and never swim alone.

Organizations have encouraged people not to use inflatable toys in open water due to currents and breezes which can pull people out to sea.


Parents are also encouraged to keep their eyes on their children at all times near water.

Caroline Casey, head of water safety development at Cork County Council, advised people to swim in a patrolled waterway and look for flags, indicating lifeguards are on duty in the area.

Speaking on RTE’s Brendan O’Connor show, she said: “Always swim between the flags close and parallel to the shore… you must supervise children at all times around the water, on the sand or in water.”

Caroline added that she would never encourage people to swim in reservoirs and quarries as the water temperature is much colder than the sea.

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And there could be dangerous objects underwater, potentially harming swimmers.

She added: “You could be at huge risk. The edges of the quarries contain very loose stone so it is very difficult to get out if you need to, we would never recommend it.”

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She called inflatable boats “silent killers,” saying individuals can be swept out to sea in the blink of an eye due to rapid wind changes.

Statistics compiled by Water Safety Ireland show that there were 78 cases of drowning in Ireland last year and 245 cases of people requiring rescue by a lifeguard.

Lisa Hollingum, from RNLI Water Safety Delivery Support, added: “By taking a few simple steps, everyone can reduce the risk of an accident in or near water.

“If you fall unexpectedly, remember to “Float to Live”: lie on your back and spread your arms and legs, moving them gently to stay afloat.

“Continue floating until you feel your breath return before calling for help or swimming ashore if you are nearby.”