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Federal Minister says number of holiday drownings is unacceptably high
Federal Minister for Sport Bridget McKenzie has today said that the number of drownings during the peak holiday season is unacceptably high and is urging all Australians to be more vigilant when swimming in the sea, at pools and especially in rivers and creeks.
According to media reports, 32 people have drowned in Australia’s waterways in the past 27 days.
Minister McKenzie stated “having just completed my surf life-saving re-refresher course, I cannot reinforce enough the need to respect our waterways and surf conditions.
“At this time of year when the temperature is high, the desire to cool off by swimming doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t over-look the conditions and take care when entering the water.”
Minister McKenzie (pictured above) advised that there are many hidden dangers people need to look out for in aquatic environments, sentiment also highlighted by the Royal Life Saving Society - Australia.
Backing Royal Life Saving’s Respect the River Project, which pays particular attention to the dangers of waterways, Minister McKenzie added “in particular, and as someone who grew up in the country, we need to take extra care when swimming in rivers and creeks as there are many hidden dangers to look out for.”
With the New Year just about to start, Royal Life Saving is reminding all Australians to be safe when swimming and to respect the river to reduce the number of drownings.
Its key current activities in the community include:
• Engaging with local stakeholders to develop drowning prevention strategies
• Delivering swimming and water safety programs in key communities
• Conducting risk assessments of river blackspots and developing a targeted action plan
• Participating in local events to educate the community
Further information can be found at www.royallifesaving.com.au/programs/respect-the-river
28th December 2018 - Heatwave sees cities and regions approach record temperatures
12th September 2018 - Drowning Deaths decrease but Life Saving bodies urge against water safety complacency
22nd January 2018 - Royal Life Saving and James Cook University researchers to breathalyse swimmers
2nd January 2017 - Australia’s holiday drowning epidemic centred on NSW
21st November 2016 - Tasmanian students urged to ‘Respect the River’
24th March 2016 - Royal Life Saving highlights river safety for Easter long weekend
23rd February 2016 - Royal Life Saving warns of drowning dangers in inland water
24th January 2016 - 59 drown in waterways since start of December
25th October 2015 - Murray River the number one river drowning black spot in Australia
14th May 2014 - 10-year review identifies drowning dangers of inland waterways
30th December 2009 - Alarming Rise in Holiday Drownings
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