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RNLI launch new water safety campaign Float to Live


By Imogen James


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The campaign.
The campaign.

THE RNLI launched its new water safety campaign today, asking people to float to live after aiding nearly 400 people on beaches last year.

Recent figures reveal more than 267,000 people visited the eight RNLI lifeguarded beaches last summer, and the charity expects another busy season.

In 2021, RNLI lifeboats in Scotland saw a 10 percent increase in launches compared to 2020, with the crew witnessing an increase in paddleboarding incidents and swimmer casualties.

Ahead of the summer holidays, the RNLI and HM Coastguard are launching a water safety campaign, urging everyone to remember that if you get into trouble in the water, Float to Live.

To do this, lean back, using your arms and legs to stay afloat. Control your breathing, then call for help or swim to safety.

In a coastal emergency, call 999 or 112 for the Coastguard.

Last summer, Katie Walker, one of the RNLI Lifeguards in Scotland, jumped into action when she caught sight of a young child swimming outside the safe swim area, marked by red and yellow flags, at Coldingham Bay.

The young girl had been enjoying a swim when she became caught in a strong rip current that began pulling her away from the beach.

Katie quickly gathered her rescue board and broke through the surf to reach her, 50 metres from the beach.

RNLI lifeguard, Katie said: "We are really grateful that a nearby swimmer was able to reassure the young girl by calling out the right instructions. The RNLI’s ‘Float to Live’ message is designed to help someone stay calm and use their natural buoyancy until either help arrives, or they are able to swim to safety themselves."

RNLI lifeguards will be on the following beaches across Scotland this summer: Silver Sands, Coldingham, St Andrews East Sands, St Andrews West Sands, Elie Harbour, Burntisland, Leven and Broughty Ferry.


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