This month, the RYA is proudly supporting the Royal Life Saving Society UK’s (RLSS UK) Don’t Drink and Drown campaign. On average, each year 80 people lose their lives through substance-related drowning and the charity fears that with a combination of the Football World Cup tournament and Christmas festivities that figure may be set to increase.
The RYA is joining the RLSS UK in urging people to be mindful and plan their route home before the festivities begin. Friends and family also have a role to play and are encouraged to make sure that their loved ones are choosing a safe route home, away from the water’s edge, wherever possible.
Taking shortcuts via towpaths in the dark can be particularly dangerous. Whether heading to the pub to watch a football match, going to a work Christmas party, having a reunion with friends, or arranging a family gathering, the charity wants to ensure that everyone has the right knowledge around water safety, and chooses a route home away from the water after drinking. 41% of accidental drownings under the influence of alcohol, occur in rivers (based on those aged 16-25). This is a significant issue and needs attention during this period.
To stay safe this festive season, follow the two key messages from the RLSS UK:
- Plan a safe route home
- Look after one another #BeAMate
Throughout December, the RYA will be supporting the campaign by sharing advice and reminders on social media. You can show your support for the campaign and raise awareness with your friends and family by sharing the posts and by following the hashtags: #DontDrinkandDrown and #BeAMate.
You can find out more about the Don’t Drink and Drown campaign by visiting the RLSS UK website.