The RNLI is calling on families to stay safe in the holiday as the charity marks World Drowning Prevention Day. (Photo: RNLI/Brad Johnson)

The RNLI is calling on families to stay safe in the holiday as the charity marks World Drowning Prevention Day. (Photo: RNLI/Brad Johnson)

Today (Tuesday) marks the third World Drowning Prevention Day and with school children across the UK enjoying the first week of their summer holidays already, the RNLI is reminding people how to stay safe while enjoying at the coast.

Sadly, days out can turn to tragedy.

In the East England area in 2022, there were 665 reported incidents (up from 423 in 2011), resulting in 712 people being aided. Of these incidents, 42 persons required casualty care and six lives were saved. Of those aided, the majority were children (354) with 117 teenagers and 213 adults (28 unknown). In East England area, there were a reported 539,862 visitors to the area, for which RNLI lifeguards and lifeboat crews provide a safe beach environment for visitors to enjoy.

Along the Lincolnshire coast, Skegness, Mablethorpe are Sutton-on-Sea beaches are patrolled by RNLI lifeguards from May to September.

In Skegness, central beach is lifeguarded which is near the RNLI lifeboat station.

The key summer safety advice to remember is:

· Visit a lifeguarded beach & swim between the red and yellow flags

· If you get into trouble Float to Live; tilt your head back with ears submerged and try to relax and control your breathing. Use your hands to help you stay afloat and then call for help or swim to safety if you can.

· Call 999 in a coastal emergency and ask for the Coastguard

Nick Ayers, water safety expert, said: ‘Now the weather is warming up we expect to see a big increase in visitors to UK coastlines and unfortunately this does mean there is likely to be an increase in the number of incidents in the sea.

‘Many of the incidents our lifeguards attend during the school holidays involve children and teenagers and we would urge everyone – but families in particular – to be aware of the risks and know what to do in an emergency.

‘Our main advice is to visit a lifeguarded beach and swim between the red and yellow flags. RNLI lifeguards will be patrolling around 245 beaches this summer to offer advice on how to stay safe and they are also there to help anyone who gets into trouble.

‘We want people to enjoy the coast but urge everyone to think about their own safety, take time to familiarise yourself with our advice and to share this with your friends and family.’

"There were 226 deaths in the UK from accidental drownings in 2022, across inland and coastal locations. 41 of these were in July and 44 in August – 40 per cent had no intention of entering the water.*

The third World Drowning Prevention Day follows a UN resolution on drowning prevention, acknowledging the issue for the first time in its 75-year history.

The warning comes as Skegness RNLI celebrate Flag Week with a number of fundraising events, culminating with an action-packed Flag Day on Sunday at the Lifeboat Station.

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