|RNLI Advice For Riverside Walkers During COVID-19
Keep a safe distance from each other while enjoying the fresh air
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is urging anyone taking river walks or visiting the coast and inland waterways to stay safe and not take any unnecessary risks.
‘During these unprecedented times, we have taken steps to close our lifeboat stations and shops to the public. However RNLI lifeboats and stations remain fully operational and we will still launch to those in peril on the sea.
‘As with all public places we’d encourage people to follow guidelines provided by the government to maintain a two-metre distance, follow good hygiene practices and avoid mass gatherings.
"Given the current COVID-19 outbreak and the importance of social distancing and avoiding non-essential contact with others, areas by the sea, lakes and rivers may be seen as providing an opportunity to enjoy fresh air and exercise while adhering to the government’s guidance.
"However, these areas can also present dangers of their own. The RNLI is asking people to ensure they follow essential water safety advice.
The RNLI advice is: "Please take the time to take note of any safety signage advising of the local hazards, check tide times to avoid being cut off and to check weather conditions before setting out as these can change quickly. If you see someone in difficulty, or you get into difficulty yourself, please call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard. The tidal Thames has its own Coastguard based in Woolwich. He coordinates the search and rescue service of the RNLI lifeboats as well as other agencies on the Thames."
More safety advice can be found at www.rnli.org/safety
Guy Addington, RNLI Water Safety Lead for the South East and London, said:
· Take care if walking on unguarded cliffs or towpaths- know your route
· Check tide times daily
· If going afloat, carry a means for calling for help and always wear a lifejacket
· Check your equipment is in good working order
· Be aware of the conditions and your capabilities and only enter the water if it is safe to do so.
March 24, 2020