Don’t Drink and Drown 2019 Brand new video asks revellers to #Beamate and make sure nobody gets left behind on nights out Today sees the launch of our national Don’t Drink and Drown campaign with a brand new film leading heading up a new set of social media assets and materials. RLSS UK are urging revellers across the UK to stick together on a night out, after the latest statistics revealed that, more than 30% of all accidental drowning victims had alcohol and/or drugs in their system. Nobody gets left behind. Anecdotal evidence suggests that people’s assessment of their own safety is skewed in their favour when under the influence: “It won’t happen to me…I’m alright.” So this year, our Don’t Drink and Drown focus is on looking after your mates, family and colleagues, whoever you’re out and about with, over the festive season. Over the last five years there have been 1,481 accidental deaths in the UK and more than 30% of the victims had alcohol and/or drugs in their bloodstream*. Many of them drowned because they made their way home alone and near water. Today’s brand new film shows how easily a fun night out can turn into tragedy, and how staying with a group and looking out for each other, can make all the difference. The film will be shared up and down the UK by a wide range of organisations supporting the campaign including fire services, lifesaving clubs, police authorities, universities and local councils. London Calling On Thursday 5 December, the Don’t Drink and Drown campaign hits the capital as representatives from London Fire Brigade and RLSS UK will be hosting a range of activities in front of Canary Wharf tube station. Activities include a demonstration on how dogs are used by the fire service, boat rescues and interactive games, all aiming to engage and educate members of the public about the dangers of drinking and being near the water, urging them to #Beamate. The campaign activity follows the launch of the River Thames Water Safety Campaign by HRH Prince William earlier this year, of which RLSS UK is involved. In Greater London, 33 people accidentally drowned over the last five years and a staggering 33% of these (13) were found to have had alcohol and/or drugs in their system, higher than the national percentage average. This makes it the 8th highest county for intoxicated drownings in the UK and follows one tragic day this July, that saw three people reported missing after swimming in the Thames. Robert Gofton, RLSS UK CEO, said: “It’s a sad truth that the number of drownings increase in the winter period, more often than not because of intoxication. “Families, friends and whole communities are left devastated every year because someone walks home alone whilst under the influence and falls into the water. “We’re urging people to stay together on a night out and make sure everyone gets home safely and don’t let them walk anywhere, especially near water, alone. No-one gets left behind” Emma Fraser, Senior Development Officer for London Fire Brigade (LFB) said: “London Fire Brigade strongly supports RLSS UK’s Don’t Drink and Drown campaign and want to urge Londoners, those who work and those that visit London, to be especially vigilant at this time of year. “At this time of year, our waterways are very cold. If you fall or jump in, you are likely to rapidly experience cold water shock and to get into difficulty.” #Beamate: share a message and save a life! Follow the campaign on #DontDrinkandDrown #Beamate Read more about the new campaign, here: www.rlss.org.uk/about-dont-drink-and-drown Stay Safe: Don’t walk home near water, you might fall in Look out for your friends, make sure they get home safely Don’t enter the water if you have been drinking Alcohol seriously affects your ability to get yourself out of trouble *Stats taken from National Water Safety Forum Water Incident Database (WAID) of which RLSS UK is a member. Data is used from 2014-2018, including accidental and natural cause records only. Adults aged 18 years+. Alcohol records are suspected or confirmed cased, based upon Coroners and emergency service records, court records.