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Warning as ‘The Drowning Season’ Commences


Water Safety New Zealand Warns as ‘The Drowning Season’ Commences

Water Safety New Zealand (WSNZ) today announced that 111 have drowned in 2002, to the end of November.

The Executive Director of Water Safety New Zealand, Alan Muir, in announcing this figure warned that the potential for a high number of drownings to occur during the next three months was very real and based on historical information this number could well exceed 50 people. These drownings will occur mainly in recreation activities involving, boating, swimming and fishing.

Recreational drownings total 59 already in 2002 and are the highest since 1995.

All environments, rivers, beaches, lakes, the open sea and water in and around the home will pose significant danger over the coming months. “The summer period is traditionally ‘the drowning season’ when most in our communities are involved in a wide range of aquatic activities, and unless the right precautions are taken there could be any number of victims”, Alan Muir said.

“The key to a safe summer is being prepared, knowing the environment and ensuring that individual skills and equipment can match the conditions at the time of participation”, Alan Muir concluded.

Attached is a breakdown of the drowning statistics by activity for the January to November periods over the past 20 years, including the number of drownings for November 2002.


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