As the Bank holiday approaches, the Coast Guard, RNLI and Water Safety Ireland have issued a joint appeal.
People are being advised to take care in the water this Bank holiday weekend.
The Coast Guard, RNLI and Water Safety Ireland have issued a joint appeal, reminding people that water based activities can be safe and enjoyable, but only with the right equipment.
A warning has been issued over the usage of inflatable toys, including dinghies and air mattresses, as they could quickly be blown out into open water or capsize.
It is advised that they should never be used in areas such as the seaside or inland waters and rivers.
As the popularity of water based activites such as kayaking, canoeing and paddle boarding increases, the safety advice for these activities includes:
- Always have a means for calling for help and make sure you can access it when you are out on the water
- Tell someone where you are going and what time you expect to return
- Wear a lifejacket or buoyancy aid
- Always check the weather forecast and sea conditions before you set off.
- Paddle in a group where possible. If you're exploring somewhere new, seek knowledge from experienced practitioners in the area.
Irish Coast Guard Operations Manager Micheál O’Toole said, ”We want everybody to enjoy our waters but please pay attention to your own safety. Never ever swim alone and if you are using a boat or kayak, please ensure that if an emergency arises and you need assistance, that you are capable of contacting the Coast Guard with a marine VHF radio, PLB or EPIRB. Never rely on a mobile phone alone.”
If you see somebody in trouble on the water or along the coast, or think they are in trouble; Dial 999 or 112 or use VHF radio CH 16 and ask for the Coast Guard.