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Sunday 28 May 2023 Dublin: 14°C
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# stay safe
Public urged to bring a communication device out on the water during activities
Water safety agencies are asking people to be cautious over the Bank Holiday weekend.

WATER SAFETY AGENCIES are urging the public to be cautious if spending time along the coast or around bodies of water over the Bank Holiday weekend.

The Coast Guard, RNLI and Water Safety Ireland are encouraging people to take steps to stay safe, especially during popular activities like kayaking, canoeing and paddle boarding.

The key advice is to always have a way of calling for help that can be accessed while out on the water.

Irish Coast Guard Operations Manager Micheál O’Toole said to “please ensure that if an emergency arises and you need assistance, that you are capable of contacting the Coast Guard with a marine VHF radio, PLB or EPIRB”.

“Never rely on a mobile phone alone,” O’Toole said.

RNLI Water Safety Delivery Support Lisa Hollingum added that there are “so many great products on the market for water safety and something as simple as a waterproof pouch to hold a means of communication for when you go out on a paddle board or kayak can make all the difference”.   

The joint statement advises:

  • checking the weather forecast and sea conditions beforehand
  • telling someone where you’re going and what time you expect to return
  • wearing a lifejacket or buoyancy aid
  • paddling in a group where possible
  • and seeking knowledge from experienced practitioners in the area if exploring somewhere new. 

Lifeguards begin summer patrols at local authority-run bathing areas this weekend.

Waterways that will be served by a lifeguard can be found on the Water Safety website.

The agencies advised against using inflatables like dinghies and air mattresses on open water because of the risk of being carried away from the shore or capsizing.

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