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25/07/2022

50 UK organisations unite to launch UK’s largest ever drowning prevention campaign

If you see someone struggling in the water this summer, Make the Right Call, Call 999 – Respect The Water'

 

The key campaign advice is:


• Call 999 – ask for Fire & Rescue if  inland or the Coastguard

if by the sea


• Tell the struggling person to try to float on their back


• Throw them something that floats

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That is the advice from the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF) which is today responding to the UN’s global World Drowning Prevention Day to launch the UK’s largest ever drowning prevention campaign, #RespectTheWater. 

The film featured in the campaign, is being widely aired across the UK today and over the next few weeks.

 

The Forum’s aim is to halve by 2026 the number of people in the UK who accidentally die in the water each year.

• 277 people accidentally drowned in 2021 in UK, with 47% of these deaths in the 3 summer months; July worst       month (Source: WAID)
• Significant majority - 62% - drowned inland, especially in rivers, lakes & canals
• Multiple interviewees including case studies from Nottingham, Newcastle-upon-Tyne & Hastings
• Events in Wales, Scotland, Belfast, Manchester, London, Birmingham, Worcester & Gloucester


Sadly,this summer has already seen several high-profile cases of people drowning after going into water to cool off in the soaring temperatures.

277 people accidentally drowned in 2021 in the UK. Almost half of these - 130 - were in the three summer months, including 63 last July alone.

Contrary perhaps to popular imagination, most accidental drownings occur inland: 168 or 62% in 2021. With all UK schools now out for summer, rivers, lakes, canals, flooded quarries and reservoirs are set to get increasingly busy, though many are perhaps unaware of the dangers that these cold, freshwater settings can pose, even when air temperatures are very high.

While a large number of people (81) accidentally drowned at the beach or on the coast, at 29% of all such fatalities, this is less than half of the number that drowned inland.

83% of all last year’s fatalities were men.

The Forum is an umbrella group of over 50 organisations that have united for the first time this summer to launch the campaign on the UN’s global World Drowning Prevention Day. They include the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), HM Coastguard (HMCG), National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) Royal Society for Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), Royal Lifesaving Society (RLSS), Canal & River Trust, Mineral Products Association, Swim England, Water Safety Scotland (WSS), Water Safety Wales (WSW) and many more.

Campaign website: Make the Right Call, Call 999 – Respect The Water

 

 


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21/07/2022

Respect The Water campaign launch & World Drowning Prevention Day - 25th July

Dear all,

The UK’s National Water Safety Forum is coming together to launch its first ever campaign, Respect The Water, in response the World Health Organisation (WHO) call to ‘do one thing’ to prevent drowning ahead of the second ever United Nations (UN) World Drowning Prevention Day on Monday 25th July.  

The campaign focuses on who to call if you see someone struggling in the water, reminding the public that for inland locations you should call 999 and ask for the Fire and Rescue Service, but for coastal locations you should call 999 and ask for Coastguard.  

As part of this lifesaving campaign, we are releasing a new & impactful water safety advert which will be shown on ITV on World Drowning Prevention Day, together with targeted advertising in high drowning areas using catch up TV, outdoor posters and social media. There will also be a significant PR push to secure media coverage during the campaign to amplify these important messages to the public at the height of summer.   

For a full run through of the campaign you can watch a recorded briefing here - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wrmHLZo7Z5Q   

 

Key activity  

  • Launch of the TV advert on 25 July with adverts to be shown on ITV (Good Morning Britain – 7:40am, ITV Lunchtime News – 1:52pm, ITV Early Evening News – 6:45pm, Coronation Street – Various between 8:15 – 8:45pm)
  • ‘Make the right call' outdoor banners at the following confirmed locations: Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool ,Boston/Lincoln, London, Newcastle, Bath , Argyll & Bute, Glasgow, Tenby, Haverfordwest, Conwy  
  • A new The Respect the Water website will go live on 25 July, with campaign content and film: https://www.respectthewater.com 
  • A national press release will go out on 25th July to highlight the campaign as well as targeted media opportunities. Several spokespeople will be available including NWSF Chair for interviews. The PR will also be available on the NWSF blog.
  • Several tweets and social media post are in place from the weekend via the NWSF twitter account – please retweet, share and like (the suggested posts are the end of this post) 
  • Approximately 45 locations across the UK will be going blue and tying into the Respect The Water Campaign. Please send us any details or info on any areas you know going blue to info@nationalwatersafety.org.uk 

 

How to get involved in the campaign 

  • Use the hashtags #RespectTheWater and #DrowningPrevention Day 
  • Over the next few days and into the weekend, post the suggested campaign preview messages (below)
  • On the 25th, directly post a copy or share the social media posts from @NWSFweb  
  • Share your going blue images, event images and videos

On behalf of the National Water Safety Forum communications and coordinating groups - we hope that you have a successful World Drowning Prevention Day and look forward to seeing your images and stories.   

 

Social media suggestions 

Suggested messages for NWSF members for the launch of our Respect The Water campaign on 25 July 2022. 

All the campaign content will be available at www.respectthewater.com from this weekend, if you are a social media manger or need access to content earlier please drop a us a line.

These can be tweaked for individual organisations. 

 

22- 24th Leading up to the day 

  • We’re supporting the @NWSFweb campaign #RespectTheWater which launches on 25 July, World #DrowningPrevention Day. We’ll be sharing lifesaving info about what to do in an emergency 
  • On 25 July it’s World #DrowningPrevention Day and we’ll be supporting the @NWSFweb new campaign #RespectTheWater. Learn more here  
  • Last year, 277 people died from accidental drowning in the UK. This is 277 too many. Support new campaign #RespectTheWater on 25 July World #DrowningPrevention Day 

 

25th On the day  

  • It’s World #DrowningPrevention Day and we’re supporting @NWSFweb new #RespectTheWater  campaign. Watch the film and tell us what you think [inset film link] 
  • On World #DrowningPrevention Day we’re supporting #RespectTheWater from @NWSFweb. Make the right call in an emergency – call 999 [inset link to film on YouTube or NWSF webpage] 
  • As a member of @NWSFweb, we’re supporting their new campaign #RespectTheWater. Watch this film to see what to do in a water emergency [inset link to film on YouTube or NWSF webpage] 
  •  Would you know what to do in a water emergency? Watch this film from @NWSFweb campaign #RespectTheWater to find out [inset link to film on YouTube or NWSF webpage] 
  • If you see someone struggling in the water, fight your instincts to get in. Call 999. Ask for Coastguard at the coast, Fire Service inland. #RespectTheWater [insert link to film on YouTube or NWSF webpage] 

 

Days/week after tweets 

  • Would you know what to do in a water emergency? Watch this film from @NWSFweb campaign #RespectTheWater to find out [inset link to film on YouTube or NWSF webpage] 
  • Make the right call – call 999. Don’t get in the water to save your friends. A rescue for 1 could be a search for 2. #RespectTheWater [insert link to film on YouTube or NWSF webpage] 
  • Xxxxxx was lucky that his Dad called 999 rather than jump in after him when he got into trouble in the sea. Make the right call – call 999 #RespectTheWater [insert link to case study] 

 

Softer touch tweets 

  • The water is a lovely place to spend time, but we all need to know how to stay safe. It’s World #DrowningPrevention Day and we’re supporting #RespectTheWater from @NWSFweb 
  • Docks and reservoirs are lovely places to spend time, but #RespectTheWater and look out for your friends. [inset link to film on YouTube or NWSF webpage] 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 




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11/07/2022

NWSF Newsletter - July 2022

Message from the Chair

July is upon us and with it comes warmer weather, the end of exams for some, schools breaking up and the holiday season is fully underway.

Because of the aforementioned all occurring simultaneously, July has also consistently been a peak month for water rescues and fatalities in the UK, so it is imperative we do all we can, collectively and collaboratively, to reduce these incidents.

The newsletter is a special edition – focusing on two main ways to address the above issue. Firstly, July 25th is the second-ever World Drowning Prevention Day (WDPD). Click here to find out more about the day and ways in which you can join in. Secondly, the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF) will be launching our ‘Respect The Water’ campaign for WDPD, which includes key messages and materials for everyone to use and share.

World Drowning Prevention Day is really a call to action, and if all our members did just one thing or supported the NWSF Respect The Water campaign it would be phenomenal and raise the profile of this important community safety issue.

Other ideas you may want to explore within your local areas:

I have issued a challenge to my organisation: to paint a pebble in honour of World Drowning Prevention Day and then place it at a waterside location; the only stipulation is to use #RespectTheWater on it. It will be great if we can get schools and local clubs engaged to spread the message to younger people.

I am also aware that many places will be seeking to go blue for WDPD. Whether it involves making a local landmark turn blue, dying your hair, using blue zinc suncream or even wearing a blue morph suit, we look forward to seeing your pictures on social media, so please share!

Finally, I wish you all a safe and happy summer, and that you all get a chance to relax and enjoy a holiday or getaway with your family or friends.

Until next time

Dawn Whittaker

Chair of NWSF

 

Respect The Water Campaign Brief

The UK’s National Water Safety Forum is coming together to launch its first ever campaign, Respect The Water, in response the World Health Organisation (WHO) call to ‘do one thing’ to prevent drowning ahead of the second ever United Nations (UN) World Drowning Prevention Day on Monday 25th July

The campaign sees over 50 UK organisations uniting for the first time to raise public awareness of what to do if you see someone struggling in the water during the summer, covering both inland and coastal areas. The key messages will be;

  • Call 999 Fire & rescue for inland waters or coastguard at the coast.
  • Tell the person to float on their back
  • Throw them something that floats

As part of this lifesaving campaign we are releasing a new & impactful water safety advert which will be shown on ITV on World Drowning Prevention Day, together with targeted advertising in high drowning areas using catch up TV, outdoor posters and social media. There will also be a significant PR push to secure media coverage during the campaign to amplify these important message to the public at the height of summer.  

 

How to get involved in the campaign

  • Support the campaign and key messages which will be available on a new website soon.
  • Come along to our live briefing webinar on July 18th at 1pm. (To join please click here).

 

What else is happening across the UK for World Drowning Prevention day?

Blackpool Tower, The Kelpies, Falkirk Wheel, Renfrew Town Hall, Royal Hospital for Children and the QUEH (Glasgow), Ness Bridge, Millennium Bridge (Tyne & Wear) will be hopefully lighting up blue!

If you know of any local landmarks turning blue or any local events – please let us know via info@nationalwatersafety.org.uk

 

Water Safety Scotland are hosting a national water safety open day for the public at the Helix,  Falkirk.

The open day will offer opportunities for the public to watch SFRS and Police rescue capabilities, as well as Newfoundland rescue dogs in action and other demonstrations.

A fun family-friendly programme of activities is also included.

More information is available here.

 

Water Safety Wales member organisations have a number of different activities planned for WDPD, including Blue Zinc sun cream for RNLI lifeguards as a talking point on beaches.

As a collective, the main focus is on a media and PR day at Llandegfed Reservoir, a Dwr Cymru Welsh Water site as well as support to the Respect The Water campaign via out of home advertising in high risk areas in in Pembrokeshire,  Gwynedd (TBC) and Conwy.

 

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11/05/2022

NWSF Newsletter - May 2022

Message from the Chair

As I write this message, the first of our annual calendar of water safety campaigns for 2022 has just taken place Calendar | National Water Safety Forum.

The National Fire Chief’s Council has been running the #BeWaterAware campaign for several years now. Fire and Rescue Services around the UK, together with partners held events and shared water safety messages. The toolkit is available to download here all year with free to use resources.

You will also see from the calendar that the Royal Life Saving Society’s annual Drowning Prevention Week awareness campaign occurs in June. Also the second World Drowning Prevention Day looms on 25th July. I am very much looking forward to seeing what our members and all water safety advocates are planning to highlight water safety, including the mental health and physical benefits of enjoying the water safely.

Colleagues in the NWSF have been busy and we have some exciting news (below) about the appointment of a marketing company to help us promote #RespectTheWater as our overarching branding and water safety campaign. Water Safety Scotland recently held a symposium to highlight the works and initiatives in Scotland, and Water Safety Wales are continuing with their work, including supporting the second petition hearing we mentioned in the last newsletter. 

Talking of public petitions, I was very proud to be invited as a guest to the Houses of Parliament by Rebecca Ramsey who was declared the winner of the petitioner of the year for her campaign to secure a class based lesson on water safety in schools. Discussions about this are ongoing with the Department of Education, but I know I speak for all members of NWSF when I congratulate Beckie for her tireless work on water safety through her campaign #DoingItForDylan and for her prestigious award.

This years data release is now published and the work on our WAID2 project continues. I am looking forward to the forthcoming demonstration of our new system, which will provide more dynamic information and a more accessible platform about water incidents and risks. This work is of vital importance to us all, as good quality data will help us target and shape of work to reduce risk and save more lives.

Finally, can I thank you all in advance for the support you will give to #RespectTheWater and our various campaigns this year – the only way to promote safety in water is through united messaging and collaboration.

Until next time

Dawn Whittaker

Chair of NWSF

 

2021 WAID Release

Public urged to take care near water as latest statistics show accidental drowning deaths increased again last year, with more dying inland than around the coast. 

  • There were 277 deaths in UK from accidental drownings in 2021 across inland and coastal locations. This is an increase of 23 from the previous year.
  • The accidental drownings form part of the total water-related fatalities in the UK – for 2021 this was 616, a decrease of 15 from the previous year.

 

Respect The Water

The National Water Safety Forum has appointed krow, part of The MISSION Group, to oversee the strategy, creative ideation and activation of its Respect the Water (RTW) initiative.

John Quarrey, CEO of krow Group, commented: “We’re thrilled about being appointed by the NWSF, and excited about working with the team to create new, disruptive ways of speaking to our audience to help save lives.”

krow secured the campaign in a competitive pitch run directly by the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF).

David Walker, Head of Road and Leisure at RoSPA, said: “We are incredibly excited to work with krow Group on what will be a new phase for RTW and drowning prevention in the UK.”

Tragically, on average, around 400 people drown in the UK every year; because of this, one of NWSF’s principal aims is to reduce accidental drowning fatalities in the UK by 50% by 2026. Current drowning figures show a clear gender divide, with men accounting for the vast majority of those who die. Therefore the campaign is primarily aimed at men, but the safety advice is just as relevant for anyone who finds themselves in difficulty in open water, both at the coast or inland.

The RTW campaign was first established by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) and has now grown into a national brand for water safety and drowning prevention campaigns through the NWSF, bringing together all strands of water safety across the UK, in a bid to help reduce the number of accidental drownings.

 

Drowning Prevention Week (18 – 25 June)

Drowning Prevention Week is just around the corner and we must continue to roll up our sleeves to address the current upward trend of accidental drowning in the UK.

In a recent RLSS UK survey we found that around two-thirds of UK adults have never had any formal training or education in water safety. Drowning Prevention Week (DPW) is the next opportunity to engage our communities in effective water safety advice.

All of the information for this yearscampaign can be found at https://www.rlss.org.uk/Pages/Category/drowning-prevention-week-campaign

There are posters and social media graphics available in both English and Welsh, plus a range of materials to help positively engage communities in water safety training. NEW animation that will help young children understand how to go from being fearful of the water to being water proficient is coming soon.

Here’s a reminder of how you can get involved:

  • Get Digital - digitally sharing the messages about the water safety code. Use your social media and other digital channels to positively engage your community.
  • Run Drowning Prevention Week activities - do you have connections with community leisure centres, pool, swim schools or clubs? Guides are available to run water safety training during water based activities.
  • Lobby for education in schools - this year, following expansive work with a variety of water safety partners, in addition to usual education materials - thematic lessons are now available for those aged 5 -11, supplementing our existing variety of school resources across the age groups. Can you share with or deliver education in schools?

 

Beckie Ramsay - petition of the year

Congratulations to North West Water Safety petitioner Beckie Ramsay who won the Petition Campaign of the Year Award at the Your UK Parliament Awards in an event held in the Speakers State Rooms in the Palace of Westminster. This recognition follows her campaigning on the issue of water safety.

Beckie, from Preston, started the petition toincrease curriculum content about water safety as part of swimming lessons” after her son Dylan drowned in 2011 following difficulty while swimming in a disused quarry with friends. The petition received more than 108,000 signatures.

Since Dylans death, Beckie has worked with the police and sector bodies such as the National Water Safety Forum and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution to raise awareness of the risks of open water. She has also spoken about water safety to over 180,000 children in schools, and was awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) in 2019 for services to the Prevention of Water Related Accidents.

Through tireless campaigning in the eleven years since the tragic death of her beloved son Dylan, Beckie has educated hundreds of thousands of young people about the dangers of open water. She has built support from across the water safety sector for changes to our education system which could save other families from suffering similar tragedy.

 

Events/opportunities:

  • Current Vacancies – NWSF Marketing and Communications Specialist
  • July 25 is World Drowning Prevention Day. This annual global advocacy event, declared by UN General Assembly Resolution, serves to highlight the tragic and profound impact of drowning on families and communities and offer life-saving solutions to prevent it. An estimated 236,000 people drown every year, and drowning is among the ten leading causes of death for children aged 5-14 years. More than 90% of drowning deaths occur in rivers, lakes, wells, domestic water storage vessels and swimming pools in low- and middle-income countries, with children and adolescents in rural areas disproportionately affected.

 

 


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29/04/2022

Press Release

Public urged to Respect The Water as latest statistics show accidental drowning deaths increased again last year, with more dying at inland water than around the coast.

 

There were 277 deaths in the UK from accidental drownings in 2021 across inland and coastal locations. This is an increase of 23 from the previous year. The accidental drownings form part of the total water-related fatalities in the UK – for 2021 the total number of deaths in water was 616, a decrease of 15 from the previous year.


The statistics and figures in the report are from the Water Incident Database (WAID), which is maintained by the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF), and the key accidental drowning death insights are as follows:


• Inland open waters, such as rivers, canals, lakes, reservoirs and quarries continue to be the leading
locations with 62 per cent of deaths (N=168).
• Males continue to over represent with 83 per cent of deaths (N=230).
• 40 per cent people had no intention to enter the water, such as those walking, with causes
including slips, trips and falls, being cut off by the tide, or swept in by waves (N= 107).

Following this concerning increase in accidental water-related deaths last year, the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF) are reminding people of the following lifesaving advice to help people enjoy our waterways and coastlines, particularly as warmer weather arrives, but water temperatures
remain dangerously cold.

  • If you get into trouble in the water, Float to Live.
  • Lean back and use your arms and legs to help you float, then get control of your breathing before calling for help or swimming to safety.
  • If you see someone else in trouble in the water, call 999 or 112. If you are at the coast ask for the coastguard, if you are inland, ask for the fire service.

The collaborating members of the NWSF, come from a wide range of sectors including sport governing bodies, rescue services, charities, regulators, navigation and harbour authorities, local government, utilities and those representing quarry operators. Later this summer NWSF will be
launching its new #RespectTheWater campaign ahead of UN World Drowning Prevention Day on July 25
th. The campaign will be promoted nationally to raise awareness of key safety advice and support the Forum’s mission to reduce drowning.


Dawn Whittaker, CEO East Sussex Fire Rescue Service & NWSF Chair said:


“The pandemic continued to present considerable challenges at our coastal and inland waterways last year as more people had staycations. The #RespectTheWater campaign is designed to help prevent further deaths and injuries in water.

We urge the public to understand the dangers, to learn the importance of knowing how to float to live, and to call 999 if others are in trouble and if there is a water related emergency.

We have seen increased numbers participating in water sports and water-based activities and
consequently a rise of the number of incidents associated with activities such as Stand-up Paddle boarding and Open Water Swimming. We want people to enjoy the water safely, so we will continue to focus on guidance, education and awareness for the public.


We will continue to work together to reduce deaths caused by drowning and water related injuries in the UK, and endeavour to reach our collective goal of halving accidental drownings in the UK by 2026. The global water safety community is onboard with a UN resolution recognising the scale and burden of drowning, calling for urgent international action.”

To view and download the WAID 2021 report visit: https://www.nationalwatersafety.org.uk/waid


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