Water Safety Water Safety Advice Do's, Don't and the Dangers of Open Water Don’t: Swim at unsupervised (un-lifeguarded sites) including lakes, quarries reservoirs and rivers Jump into the water until you have acclimatised to the water temperature Jump into the water from heights or ‘tombstone’ Swim into deep water which will be colder Do: Swim at supervised (lifeguarded) sites Swim parallel with the shore, where you can quickly get to safety Swim with friends or family, so that you can help each other if you need to Look for signs and advice about the specific dangers at the place where you are swimming Think about what you will do if something goes wrong Contact a reputable outdoor pursuits or coasteering centre if you want to take part in more extreme activities Dangers of open water include– The height of the fall or jump if tombstoning The depth of the water – this changes and is unpredictable Submerged objects may not be visible Obstacles or other people in the water Lack of safety equipment and increased difficulty for rescue The shock of cold water can make swimming difficult and increase the difficulty in getting out of the water Strong currents can rapidly sweep people away Uneven banks and river beds Water quality eg toxic algal blooms and industrial/agricultural pollution All of these hazards can be controlled through proper organisation and planning. If someone is in difficulty in the water – Shout reassurance to them and shout for help and ensure the emergency services are on their way (call 999 or 112) Without endangering yourself, see if you can reach out to them, extend your reach with a stick, pole, item of clothing, lie down or stay secure. Alternatively throw something buoyant to them such as a ring buoy, part filled plastic container, ball or anything that will float. Keep your eye on them all the time and shout reassurance urging them to propel themselves to safety. For more information and tips click here.