Campaign Will Highlight Water Safety For Islands’ Kids

sailing clubScilly’s Community Safety Partnership is devising a campaign to encourage young people to adopt safe sailing practices.

The forum, made up of the Police, Council and health service representatives is asking its partners for ideas on the best way to convey the sea safety message to kids.

This follows a Council report, which raised concerns about “a culture of invulnerability” that exists among some water users.

In the Children and Young People’s plans, the Senior Officer for Children, Keith Grossett, writes that many teenage water users are reluctant to wear personal floatation devices whilst on the water.

And whilst luckily there have been no drownings, there have been near misses arising from combinations of alcohol and poor visibility.

The large numbers of inexperienced visiting boaters can add to the potential risk in the summertime.

Keith says they want to ensure that both local and visiting sailors avoid tragedies like the 2013 death of a sailor in Padstow, which could have been prevented if he’d attached a kill cord to his speedboat.

Keith says it’s fantastic for youngsters living in Scilly to have the opportunity to use the water so easily and the campaign isn’t about trying to stop them doing this.

He said getting into the habit of using flotation devices and kill cords is just good practice.

Some of the suggestions include poster campaigns and hosting water safety groups in the Five Islands School.

The Community Safety Partnership members will decide on the best options at their next meeting.

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