Appeal to Falkirk people to ‘take no risks’ around reservoirs and rivers
People across Forth Valley have been urged not to take any risks around reservoirs, rivers and lochs this summer.
The appeal comes from Scottish Water as latest figures from the National Water Safety Forum show that, in 2020, a total of 254 people lost their lives to unintentional drowning in the UK - 39 of them in Scotland.
Peter Farrer, Scottish Water’s chief operating officer, said: “While people should enjoy any good weather we have and take pleasure around the country’s beautiful lochs, reservoirs and rivers as the Covid-19 restrictions ease - following any Scottish Government guidelines in place at the time - it’s absolutely vital they stay safe at all times and behave responsibly.
“Safety is a serious issue at reservoirs as, while the water may look harmless, there are many hidden dangers. We need to ensure everyone is aware of these hazards.”
Deep, cold water is a particular danger at reservoirs, which are working parts of Scottish Water’s infrastructure.
Dams, steep banks, overflows and underwater pipework can also present real hazards.
The publicly-owned utility’s reservoirs are situated in remote locations, meaning there is a lack of immediate assistance and mobile phone reception can be poor.
In the interests of public safety, Scottish Water does not encourage swimming in its reservoirs.
One of the biggest concerns with dog owners is when pets dives into water, chasing a ball or stick. It more often survives such incidents, but the owners, who have attempted to save them, sometimes don’t.
Dogs need to be kept under control if they are being walked near open water.