96 people drowned in NSW waterways last year.
The Royal Life Saving National Drowning Report 2016 has revealed that a total of 280 people lost their life to drowning in Australian waterways between July 1 2015 and June 30 2016. With NSW having the largest population in Australia, it is no surprise that more drownings occur here than in any other state. Over the last 10 years alone we have seen more than 1000 drowning deaths in NSW. Drowning is preventable and Royal Life Saving NSW urges the community to be vigilant at all times when in, on or around water.
- Males consistently drown at a rate four times that of females.
- Other at-risk population groups include:
- children 0-4,
- young adults
- older Australians
- and culturally and linguistically diverse communities (CALD).
WHERE DO PEOPLE DROWN?
- Inland water ways (including rivers, creeks, streams, lakes, lagoons and dams) continue to be a leading location for drowning in NSW due to the unpredictable nature of these environments.
- Beaches also claim a significant number of lives each year, most commonly away from patrolled areas.
- Back yard swimming pools are the leading location for drowning in the 0-4 age group. Drowning in this age group has also occurred in spas, buckets, bath tubs, ponds, water tanks and more.
- Other areas including rocks, oceans, harbours and public swimming pools are also high risk drowning locations.
2016 NSW DROWNING OVERVIEW
- 96 drowning deaths in NSW – A reduction of 6% on the 10 year average
• 91% of drownings were male
• The 25-34 year age group had the highest drowning toll (18%)
• 6 drowning deaths in children aged 0-4
• Over 1/4 of all drownings were people aged over 65 years
• Beaches accounted for 31% of all drowning deaths
• Inland waterways accounted for almost ¼ of all drownings
• Swimming and recreating was the leading activity undertaken prior to drowning followed by boating
HOW CAN YOU STAY SAFE?
- WEAR A LIFE JACKET
- SUPERVISE CHILDREN
- LEARN CPR AND FIRST AID
- AVOID ALCOHOL
- LEARN LIFE SAVING SKILLS
Drowning is PREVENTABLE- make sure you are equipped with the knowledge and skills to keep you and your family safe when in, on or around water.
Through various Royal Life Saving initiatives such as Be Pool Safe, Keep Watch, Grey Medallion, Respect the River, Swim Safe Swim Sober and Swim & Survive, Royal Life Saving NSW are striving to reduce drownings.