Brendan O’Hara MP “I’m supporting the RNLI “Respect The Water Drowning Prevention  campaign”:

Brendan O'Hara RNLI

Coastal fatality figures released on 9 th June by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) show the number of deaths at the UK coast reached a five-year high in 2015, with 168 people losing their lives.
The number of near-fatal incidents was higher still, with the RNLI’s UK lifeboat crews and lifeguards saving 385
lives  in 2015.
The figures are released as the charity enters the third year of its national drowning prevention campaign,
Respect the Water, which aims to halve accidental coastal deaths by 2024.
The campaign is targeted at adult men, who account for most incidents. Last year saw an increase in the
number of men losing their lives at the coast. Between 2011 and 2014 men have accounted for three-
quarters (75%) of coastal deaths but, in 2015, this increased to 84%.
A surprising trend is that around half of the people who die at the coast each year never planned to enter
the water. Of the 168 deaths last year, over half (52%) did not intend to get wet – people taking part in
activities such as coastal walking, running, climbing or angling. In fact, coastal walking and running
accounted for over one-fifth (21%) of last year’s coastal deaths.
The coastline around Argyll and Bute is rugged and beautiful and should be enjoyed but for your own sake  and for those around you, treat the water with respect.
The charity is asking people to visit RNLI.org/RespectTheWater where they will find information on coastal
hazards, how to keep themselves safe, and what to do should they or someone else end up in trouble in the
water. On social media search #RespectTheWater.
– Ends –
Notes to Editors
• The fatality figures quoted are for water-related fatalities from accidents and natural causes in UK tidal
waters. The figures for 2011–2015 are: 164, 163, 167, 163 and 168.
• In 2015, walking and running contributed to the most coastal deaths, accounting for 21% (36).
Swimming, jumping in and general leisure use of the water accounted for 21% (35); commercial use of
the water 17% (29); sailing and boating 10% (16), and angling 7% (11).
Media contacts
For more information, contact Laura Haslam, RNLI Public Relations Officer, on 01202 663181 /
Laura_Haslam@rnli.org.uk or Ruth Bessant on 01202 336789 / Ruth_Bessant@rnli.org.uk.

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