Sunday marks the first day of National Drowning Prevention Week (NDPW) 2017 – the Lifesaving Society Canada’s annual initiative focused on community and media attention on the drowning problem and drowning prevention across Canada. This year’s NDPW falls on July 16-22.
“We use National Drowning Prevention Week to bring attention to the drowning problem in Canada and to remind people to be water smart all year,” says Executive Director of the Lifesaving Society Nova Scotia branch, Mike Maguire. NDPW is one of the Lifesaving Society’s leading public education initiatives. Throughout the week, daily events will take place across Canada to help promote water safety and drowning prevention. During this week, the Society urges individuals to supervise children in and around the water, refrain from drinking alcoholic beverages while participating in aquatic activities and wear a personal flotation device (PFD) or lifejacket when boating. The Lifesaving Society Nova Scotia Branch has organized NDPW in NS, with events and activities planned throughout the province.
“A large percentage of Nova Scotia drownings occur in July, August and September when people spend more time in, on and around the water,” says Director of the Nova Scotia Lifeguard Service, Paul D’Eon. “As part of National Drowning Prevention Week, we want people to enjoy the water, but in a safe and responsible manner.” The Lifesaving Society is a national, charitable organization working to prevent drowning and reduce water-related injury through our training programs, Water Smart® public education, drowning research and aquatic safety standards. The Lifesaving Society certifies Canada’s National Lifeguards.
The following main messages were selected for NDPW 2017 based on the major risk factors presented in the Canadian Drowning Report – 2017 Edition:
• If you’re not within arms’ reach, you’ve gone too far. Always supervise children. • Boat sober. Alcohol consumption is a factor in almost 40% of boating-related fatalities.
• Choose It. Use It. Always wear a Lifejacket or PFD.
• Lifejackets don’t work if you don’t wear them. Not wearing a Lifejacket or PFD was a factor in 82% of boating deaths.
• Approximately 500 Canadians die in preventable water-related incidents annually.
Even one drowning is one too many.
Source: Media Release