Festive warning to drinkers in Swansea
With the Christmas party season fast approaching, Swansea people are again being reminded about the dangers of drinking too much alcohol close to areas of water.
An event has been arranged for Castle Square on Friday evening (December 9) to highlight the danger.
The on-going Royal Life Saving Society UK (RLSS) ‘Don’t Drink and Drown’ campaign is being supported by Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service, Swansea University, the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, their student unions, South Wales Police, the Carmarthenshire Water Safety Partnership and Swansea Council
A short, hard-hitting film will be shown on Castle Square’s big screen as part of the event. Representatives from participating agencies will also be there to hand out information and talk to pub and club-goers.
Last year, 20 per cent of all adult accidental drowning victims in the UK had alcohol in their bloodstream.
Over the previous three years (2012 to 2014) an average of 38 per cent of 18 to 21-year-old accidental drowning victims had alcohol in their bloodstream in the UK. In 2015, this increased to 67 per cent.
Di Steer, RLSS UK Chief Executive, said: “People die each year after entering the water with alcohol in their bloodstream, either deliberately or completely by accident. Drinking near or in water can be a dangerous and deadly cocktail. Alcohol can seriously impede your ability to survive in water.
“When walking home from a night out, avoid routes that are alongside water, particularly in the darkness, and always stay with and look out for your friends.
“We want everyone to have a great time this Christmas and our Don’t Drink and Drown campaign gives essential advice to party-goers to make sure they know how to stay safe when they’re out celebrating.”
Swansea Council has recently installed an extra 20 metres of safety barriers alongside the River Tawe behind the anti-aircraft gun statue.
Cllr Mark Child, Cabinet Member for Healthy City and Wellbeing, said: “We want residents and visitors to enjoy their Christmas nights out in Swansea, but we want them to do so safely.
“This partnership campaign is urging people to remember the dangers posed by too much alcohol if their walk home after a night out takes them alongside or close to a body of water. We’re also calling on people to keep an eye out for their friends to make sure they get home safely, too. “
Damion Comey, Trustee at the Carmarthenshire Water Safety Partnership, said: “As a new local registered charity concerned with raising awareness of water safety measures and developing our work supporting families affected by fatal drownings across South West Wales, we are proud to be involved in promoting this Royal Life Saving Society campaign.”
Some of the tips to stay safe this Christmas include don’t walk home near water, look out for your friends and make sure they get home safely, and don’t enter the water if you have been drinking because alcohol seriously affects your ability to get yourself out of trouble.
Have a look at www.rlss.org.uk for more information. You can also visit www.facebook.com/RLSSUK or follow #DontDrinkAndDrown on Twitter.