With flood and wind warnings in place for the UK over the next few days, The Royal Life Saving Society UK is warning families to take care when close to water.

A spell of very windy weather with severe gales and storm force winds forecast for parts of the UK, combined with heavy rain may pose increased danger around coastal areas and inland water sites. This has been highlighted by a reported incident of a 6 month old child being blown into the water from the docks in Somerset, narrowly avoiding a drowning situation.

Di Standley, chief executive of The Royal Life Saving Society UK, said: “We are expecting further heavy rain and strong winds as the week goes on, and we urge the public to be vigilant near water, particularly whilst the wind is so strong. People are often curious to see rivers at their peak, and to brave the stormy weather, but this can be dangerous. It’s vital not to underestimate the power of the weather. Everyone needs to be proactive and to learn about water safety to protect themselves and their loved ones.”

Here are some tips to remember in a flooding situation:

If you get a flood warning:

  • Motorists should never attempt to drive through flooded roads or fords. The flood may be deep or fast moving and vehicles can be quickly swept away
  • Never allow children or pets to go near or play in flood water. It is hazardous and may be contaminated with chemicals
  • Keep an eye on weather reports for flooding in your area. Do not travel in heavy rainstorms unless absolutely
  • Keep an eye on friends and neighbours, especially the elderly who may be at risk of hypothermia after their homes have flooded
  • During extreme weather conditions the emergency services will be very busy, so only call for assistance if there is a risk to life or serious environmental damage