Worthing urges beachgoers to stay safe this summer
Released: Tuesday, 25 July 2023
With the summer holidays underway, Worthing Borough Council is supporting the RNLI's Float to Live campaign to help increase understanding of how to be safer in our sea.
Today (Tuesday 25th July 2023) marks World Drowning Prevention Day, which promotes life-saving advice to try to prevent further water-related deaths.
Globally, more than 2.5 million lives have been lost to drowning in the last decade according to the World Health Organisation.
With thousands of people set to visit Worthing beach over the coming months, we are urging everyone to learn the potential dangers as well as the key steps to be safer at sea.
Float to Live encourages beach-goers to learn and practice a five-step guide to floating which could help if they get into trouble in the water:
- Tilt your head back with your ears submerged
- Relax and try to breathe normally
- Move your hands to help you stay afloat
- It's OK if your legs sink - we all float differently
- Spread your arms and legs to improve stability
To help spread the message, we are promoting Float to Live posters, created by the RNLI, along the town's promenade, and offering them to concession holders who want to back the campaign.
Sea users should also consider the tides, wave conditions, wind speed and direction and water temperature before heading beyond the foreshore.
Visitors should also know their physical limitations and thoroughly check any kit before going onto or into the water. It is vital to have the appropriate life jackets and buoyancy aids for your activity, along with a waterproof pouch for your phone. Strength in numbers is also recommended.
We have created a short video with our Coastal Office team to summarise some of the key water safety tips:
Worthing's Coastal Office is also reinforcing its warnings about tombstoning, after two young boys suffered serious injuries after jumping into the sea off the town's pier recently.
Jumping into the sea from a high platform is extremely dangerous and can cause life-changing injuries or even death. This is also a breach of one of the town's byelaws and could result in a £50 fine for anyone caught doing it.
Cllr Vicki Wells, Worthing's Cabinet Member for the Environment, said:
“Worthing tragically lost two men this May after incidents on the water and the RNLI's new campaign helps remind people how to stay safe when visiting the seaside. While it's brilliant we have a huge stretch of seafront for people to enjoy, we want everyone to get home safely after their day on the beach or in the water.
“Water-based activities are huge fun but can come with risks, especially at sea. I encourage everyone heading into or onto the water this summer to heed the RNLI's advice or pop into our Coastal Office on Worthing promenade if you have questions.
“If you think you or someone you see may be getting into trouble in the water, please don't hesitate to call 999 and ask for the coastguard.”
Worthing Coastal Office is not an emergency response facility but the wardens play their part to promote beach and water welfare. Their seafront patrols offer first aid and sea safety advice.
For more safety tips from the RNLI to keep you and your loved ones safe at the coast and in the water, see:
Photo: Worthing Beach during the summer
Page last updated: 20 February 2024