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During the summer months, it’s natural to want to get outside with friends and family and enjoy the sunshine.

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But throughout the season we’re called to high numbers of rescues sparked by the hot weather - particularly to young people in difficulty.

Whether it's a barbecue or a camping trip, there are a wide range of risks that everyone needs to be alert to.  

It’s natural to want to cool down in the heat, but people are often unaware of the dangers posed by lake and river swimming. Deep water, unseen debris and hidden currents  mean things can quickly go wrong.

Children and teenagers are often fascinated by fire and this becomes a particular danger during the dry summer months. Grass fires are frequent and often the result of experimenting with fire.

Keep safe this summer by following our golden rules:

  • Adults set a good example – behave safely and responsibly!


  • Be aware of your children’s limitations – eg, how confident are they in the water?
  • Don't jump or dive in, as the water can be far deeper than it looks -  with unseen hazards.
  • Never swim near weirs or locks as there are usually dangerous currents.
  • Even inland waters can be very cold, no matter how warm the weather. Be aware that this can quickly cause cramp and breathing difficulties.


  • Never use accelerants such as petrol on barbecues
  • Never leave a barbeque unattended
  • Never cook or smoke inside tents
  • Always make sure cigarettes are properly extinguished
  • Never leave lighters or matches around – they can be a temptation to children .

Carbon monoxide - the quiet killer...

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colourless, odourless, highly poisonous gas that can kill in minutes.

CO poisoning can be caused by ANY fuel that burns or smoulders.

Make sure your camping light and stove are clean and properly adjusted.

Never take a portable barbecue – or lit charcoal – into an enclosed space like a tent or caravan.

And make sure exhaust from generators is properly vented away from occupied areas.

More information

For more information on general safety, visit the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents' website.

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