UK Water related fatalities 2010 WAID report: Reveals 420 deaths from accidents & Natural causes

There were 420 water-related deaths from accidents or natural causes across the UK in 2010.

The report, which uses the WAter Incident Database (WAID), reveals that, as in previous years, the highest number of fatalities – 217 (52 per cent) – happened in inland waters such as rivers, canals, lakes, lochs, reservoirs and ponds.

Nearly a quarter of fatalities – 94 (22 per cent) – happened at the coast or in a harbour, dock, marina or port, while an additional 73 deaths (17 per cent) happened out at sea. Twenty-four fatalities were the result of incidents in baths (including jacuzzis or hot-tubs), six in swimming pools and six in areas that are not usually watercourses, such as flooded areas. Although fatalities were spread across every day of the week and every month of the year, Saturday was the most common day and April and June the most common months for fatalities to occur.

WAID was developed by the NWSF to enable greater detail and volume in the collection of data on fatal and non-fatal drowning, other water-related deaths and injuries, and near misses. It collects incident data from a wide range of sources including the emergency services, sports governing bodies, coastguard, rescue services, coroners’ courts, and press reports. WAID was developed by NWSF members, including: national partners – British Waterways, British Sub Aqua Club, Maritime and Coastguard Agency, Royal National Lifeboat Institution, RoSPA and Royal Life Saving Society; sports governing bodies; and regional and local organisations, including Cornwall Council. It has been developed in partnership with the Department for Transport.

The purpose of the database is to provide a comprehensive and reliable evidence-base for risks to the public from water-related activities which can be used to inform decisions on risk acceptability, prevention and the appropriateness of risk controls and regulation. The 2010 figures and the development of WAID will be discussed at the National Water Safety Seminar in Birmingham on April 26.

The UK Water related fatalities 2010 WAID report (PDF 784kb) is available here.

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BSAC annual incident report

The closing date for incident submissions for BSAC’s Annual Incident Report is 21st October 2011. Every year, BSAC compiles a comprehensive Annual Incident Report to aid diver safety by sharing information and allowing all divers to learn from the reports of others’ misfortunes

Read more on the BSAC website...

 

 

Lifejackets save lives

86 maritime deaths between 2007 and 2010 may have been avoided if those involved had worn a lifejacket or buoyancy aid. This is the latest finding of an expert panel which has been analysing maritime accidents since 2007.

Recently the panel, consisting of members from the MCA, RNLI, RYA, MAIB, lifejacket industry and Portsmouth University, looked at the 35 maritime deaths in 2010 where lifejacket wear may have been appropriate. They agreed that in 21 of those incidents a life might have been saved if a lifejacket or buoyancy aid had been worn.

Read more on the MCA website…

New Water Incident Database reveals 405 deaths across UK

More than 400 people died from accidents or natural causes in water across the UK in 2009, according to the first report from a new incident database.

WAID (the WAter Incident Database) was developed by the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF) to enable greater detail and volume in the collection of data on fatal and non-fatal drowning, other water-related deaths and injuries, and near misses.

Of the 405 fatalities in 2009, more than half (213) came as a result of incidents in inland waters, which include rivers, lakes, lochs, reservoirs, canals and ponds. Nearly a quarter (99) happened at the coast or in a harbour, dock, marina, or port, while one in seven deaths (57) happened further out at sea. There were 19 deaths as a result of incidents in baths, five in swimming pools and one involving a water container. Eleven people died in places that are not usually watercourses, for example flooded areas.

Under – 19’s accounted for 59 of the fatalities, of whom 14 died as a result of incidents in rivers (predominantly teenagers), seven in baths (mostly 0-2 year olds) and six in ponds.

Deaths happened during a wide variety of water-based activities. Forty-eight of those who died were swimming at the time of the incident, 27 were angling and 20 were sub aqua diving. The most commonly-reported activity, however, which accounted for 78 fatalities, was someone entering the water while walking or running, for example to cool off or by falling. A further 17 fatalities happened after motor vehicles entered water.

Saturday was the most common day and August the most common month for fatalities to occur.

David Walker, a member of the NWSF and operations manager at the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), said: “As the figures for 2009 sadly reveal, drowning is one of the leading causes of accidental death in the UK. WAID will greatly enhance our understanding of water-related incidents that claim lives and cause injuries across the UK each year. Managing water risks is all about a balance between giving people freedom to make informed choices about how to enjoy water and the impact those choices have on society in general. By providing better information, WAID will assist in striking that balance and enable us to develop more effective prevention work. Working together to collect and share data means WAID members and communities will be able to better manage risks than if they worked alone.”

WAID was developed by NWSF members, including: national partners – British Waterways, British Sub Aqua Club, Maritime and Coastguard Agency, Royal National Lifeboat Institution, RoSPA and Royal Life Saving Society; sports governing bodies; and regional and local organisations, including Cornwall Council. It has been developed in partnership with the Department for Transport.

The full report is available to download in PDF format. More information about the WAID system can be found here.

WAID launched

Paul Clark MP, said: “We are all aware of the dangers water can pose. As a Government, we are committed to improving safety on our waters, but we can’t do this alone. I am grateful to RoSPA and the National Water Safety Forum for the excellent work they have done to date. Today’s launch of the Water Accident and Injury Database is an important step towards making our waters safer.”

Read more on the RoSPA website…

 

WAID to be launched at RoSPA water safety confrence

The UK’s first national database holding details of all water-related deaths and injuries will be unveiled next month at RoSPA’s National Water Safety Congress. WAID, developed by members of the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF) including RoSPA, will allow new levels of both detail and volume in the collection of data on drowning, which remains one of the leading causes of accidental death in the UK.

Read more on the RoSPA website…

New drowning figures show need for more bank holiday care

The 2006 figures, which were collated by RoSPA using information from members of the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF), show that there were 105 accidental drowning fatalities at coastal locations, 30 out at sea, 22 in residential settings (including garden ponds, baths and home swimming pools), and eight in other swimming pools.

Read more on the RoSPA website…