Staying safe in and around Scotland's waters
Stop and Think, Spot the dangers
If you are thinking of being near or entering the water, have you considered the following?
- Scotland’s Waters can be very cold even in the summer which can lead to Cold Water Shock, for more information visit our webpages
- Keep off all frozen waters, they may not be able to handle the weight of a person
- Check for any signage or flags which could warn you of potential dangers
- Alcohol/drugs and coastal or inland waters don’t mix - they can reduce coordination and impair judgement and reaction times
- The depth of the water may hide underwater ledges, hidden currents and unseen items
- Be aware of other water activities that may pose a threat to you
- If it is safe to enter the water, ensure you have a safe way out
- If you are at the coast have you considered rip currents, offshore winds and the tide?
Stay Together, Stay close
- It is better to go near the water with a friend or family member
- Float – If you are in trouble in the water, float until you feel calm…then think what to do next
- If you fall into water, fight your instinct to swim until cold water shock passes
- Lean back, extend your arms and legs
- If you need to, gently move them around to help you float
- Float until you can control your breathing
- Then call for help or swim to safety.
In an emergency
- If you see someone in trouble, do not enter the water
- Look for a throw line or life ring to help whilst you wait on the emergency services
- Call 999 or 112