Central and North Burnett Times - - FRONT PAGE -

IN THE wake of the tragic drown­ing death of a Mount Perry tod­dler, emer­gency ser­vices per­son­nel have is­sued a re­minder about safety in and around wa­ter.

Queens­land Am­bu­lance Ser­vice Wide Bay chief su­per­in­ten­dent Rus­sell Cooke said it was im­por­tant to al­ways be mind­ful and su­per­vise chil­dren around wa­ter.

“Ac­ci­dents can hap­pen in sec­onds but stay with us for a life­time,” Mr Cooke said.

“Chil­dren are ad­ven­tur­ous by na­ture and will find ways to open gates or ven­ture into ar­eas un­know­ingly dan­ger­ous to them.

“Be con­scious of this at home, but also if you’re vis­it­ing a new lo­ca­tion that is on or near wa­ter.”

Mr Cooke said it’s not al­ways the ob­vi­ous haz­ards such as pools and nat­u­ral wa­ter bod­ies.

“Chil­dren can find them­selves in trou­ble even while play­ing in buck­ets or in the bath,” he said.

Ac­cord­ing to fig­ures re­leased in the Royal Life Sav­ing Na­tional Drown­ing Re­port for 2016, 280 peo­ple drowned in Aus­tralian wa­ter­ways with 14% of those from falls into bod­ies of wa­ter.

Those fig­ures were a 5% in­crease on the num­ber of cases for the pre­vi­ous year but also show a re­duc­tion of deaths over a 10 year pe­riod.

Of the 280 recorded drown­ing deaths 75 oc­curred

in in­land wa­ter­ways such as streams, creeks and dams.

In­land wa­ter­ways con­tinue to be the lead­ing lo­ca­tions for drown­ing deaths in Aus­tralia.

Royal Life Sav­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Justin Scarr said that it had been a tragic sum­mer which had more than 70 peo­ple drown in Aus­tralian wa­ter­ways.

“It’s im­por­tant that all Aus­tralian have the skills to pre­vent drown­ing, avoid haz­ards, swim to safety and make safer choices about life jack­ets, res­cue tech­niques and places to swim,” Mr Scarr said.


SAFETY RE­MINDER: QAS chief su­per­in­ten­dent Rus­sell Cooke has urged safety around bod­ies of wa­ter.

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