Stay Safe Around Water This Public Holiday

Keep Your Mates Safe

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While we’ve been focused on the Covid numbers this Summer, there’s another shocking toll that’s been growing.

It's time to get serious. Since 1 December, 50 Australians have drowned in waterways across Australia – up from 46 at the same time last year. Almost a quarter of those who have died were young men aged 18 to 34.

The rise in drowning deaths has prompted Royal Life Saving’s Chief Executive Officer Justin Scarr to issue an appeal to young men to Make the Right Call.

“We know that drinking alcohol around water can be lethal and that it is a key risk factor for young men in particular,” Mr Scarr said. 

Royal Life Saving wants everyone enjoying the water and to get home safely to their loved ones. So please hold off having a beer until after you’ve been in the water.

- Royal Life Saving’s Chief Executive Officer Justin Scarr

Here’s the concerning facts.

  • 33 per cent of young men drown with alcohol in their system, with over half being intoxicated at the time of drowning.
  • More than 40 per cent of the young men who drowned this summer were swimming at the time, but 33 per cent died after falling into water.

“We’re asking young men to make the right call and to look out for themselves and their mates and to plan ahead: avoid alcohol when you’re around water; wear a lifejacket if you are boating or fishing and never go alone.

Royal Life Saving research shows there are blackspots for river drowning deaths across the country.

  • Murray River (NSW, VIC, SA) - particularly hotspots near Albury, Corowa, Moama, Mildura, Echuca and Murray Bridge - the number one risk location,
  • Yarra River (VIC)
  • Hawkesbury River (NSW) near Windsor
  • Murrumbidgee River in both NSW and the ACT
  • Swan River in Perth (WA)
  • Brisbane River (QLD).
  • Parramatta River (NSW),
  • Clarence River (NSW) in the Grafton and Yamba regions
  • Georges River (NSW)
  • Ross River (QLD) in Townsville
  • Derwent River (TAS)
  • Katherine River (NT).

For more information visit the Royal Life Saving website.

Royal Life Saving Society – Australia’s research, education and advocacy work in drowning prevention and water safety is supported by the Australian Government.

In association with Royal Life Saving Society

24 January 2022

Article by:

In association with Royal Life Saving Society

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