We believe that spending time by our canals and rivers should make us all happier and healthier and staying safe by the water is key to enjoying your time there. This is why we’re supporting a campaign led by the Royal Life Saving Society UK, which warns us all not to walk home next to water or to enter water when under the influence of alcohol.
We don’t want to stop people from having a drink at one of the many bars, pubs or restaurants alongside our canals or rivers. We do however want to make sure that you get home safely afterwards.
Walking home in the dark along a towpath is not the best idea, particularly if you’re on your own. If you’ve been drinking your judgement, balance and reaction to any lumps or bumps in the towpath will be impaired and the chance of ending up in the water is increased. Nearly a quarter of all adult drowning victims have alcohol in their bloodstream.
On all inland waterways (canals, rivers, docks, marinas, quarries, reservoirs), there were 366 accidental drownings involving alcohol and/or drugs in the United Kingdom between 2012-2016. That’s an average of 73 per year. 177 of these were intoxicated walkers and 42% of these people were 17-29 years old.
*All statistics are provided by the Royal Life Saving Society UK
We hosted a Facebook Live at the Aire Bar, which sits alongside the Aire & Calder Navigation in Leeds. We talked about why the Don’t Drink and Drown campaign is so important with RLSS UK, West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service and Bath Spa University. Thanks to Made in Leeds TV for the loan of their presenter.
Last date edited: 6 June 2018