Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service -Falmouth Blue watch in collaboration with Devon and Cornwall Police’s #CoastSafe A joint initiative instigated by Falmouth Fire Station watch manager Stuart Williams and Newquay police sergeant Andy Mulhern sees them working together with the Royal Life Saving Society to bring the ‘Don’t Drink and Drown’ message to Custom House Quay in Falmouth on 6th December @ 1630 hrs (meeting at 1600hrs).

Four licenced premises, The ‘Front, The Stable, Quayside Inn and The Chain Locker are supporting the initiative, with staff wearing T-shirts and wristbands promoting #DontDrinkandDrown as well as reinforcing the message on beer mats.  New throw lines have been provided for emergency use on the Quay and, at 1630ish , pub and restaurant staff will be trained to use them by Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service water rescue specialists and Falmouth Coastguard Rescue Team. If someone was to fall in the water around the Quay it is these staff who would be the first responders on the scene and who could save a life.

Falmouth Watch manager Stuart Williams said: “Accidental drowning statistics are rising with alcohol involved in a high proportion and the biggest single reason people drown.  Working in partnership with agencies and charities we are supporting the RLSS ‘Don’t Drink and Drown’ campaign. This initiative will show we are taking positive action with the aim of preventing anybody coming to harm around our harbours and coastline.  By providing throw lines on the Quay and training local staff on how to use them, we are giving the tools and skills to members of the community who are likely to be notified of someone in the water first and can provide immediate lifesaving intervention. Cold Water Shock is a killer and we urge everybody to ‘Respect the Water’.”

Devon and Cornwall Police #CoastSafe leader PS Andy Mulhern said: “We are joining with partners again to re-affirm a message that drowning statistics are too high, we want to reduce the amount of harm suffered by people on our coasts.  We have been working with Falmouth University students’ union and licenced premises on Custom House Quay and are really grateful for the support they are giving to this campaign.”

Andrea Roberts, Community Drowning Prevention Coordinator for the Royal Life Saving Society said: “We are delighted to be working with all the #CoastSafe partners to promote the #DontDrinkandDrown campaign in Falmouth. Every year people lose their lives to drowning with alcohol in their system, don’t let this be you or someone you know – follow these simple guidelines.”

  • Don’t enter the water if you have been drinking – alcohol seriously affects your ability to get yourself out of trouble.
  • Always look out for your friends, make sure they get home safely and do not go off alone.
  • Don’t walk home near water, you might fall in, always stay in lit areas.

The initiative is supported by the #CoastSafe collaboration CFRS, RNLI, Cornwall Air Ambulance, HM Coastguard and Devon and Cornwall Police. Falmouth fxu.org, Cornwall S&R

There were 366 accidental drownings involving alcohol and/or drugs in the UK from 2012-2016, an average of 73 per year – 21% of all accidental drownings.

There are three issues:

  • Intoxicated walkers: 177 Assumed to be walking home after drinking.
  • Intoxicated water users: 144 Intentionally engaging in aquatic activity after drinking
  • Intoxicated found in water: 40

For more information go to: http://www.rlss.org.uk/about-us/campaigns/dont-drink-drown/#1502984355463-fd3f0650-628e