This year’s Water Savvy Fun Day broke records in terms of attendance with over 4,000 people flocking to Bewl Water, Tunbridge Wells on Sunday 23rd June, to enjoy a Water Savvy Fun Day and learn vital skills that could one day help to save a life.
We teamed up with Kent Fire & Rescue Service to deliver the event with the aim of the day being to raise awareness of water safety - how to stay safe and what to do if you ever find yourself or someone else in trouble in water.
The day was opened by CFO Dawn Whitaker and crowds were able to watch water rescue demonstrations, climb aboard fire engines and rescue boats, meet firefighters and search dogs, learn how to use a throw line and pick up important CPR skills.
Water Rescue Challenge success!
The day also saw success for our Water Rescue team who won the Kent/East Sussex head to head water rescue challenge!
Pup Upton (Group Manager) said: “The Water Savvy event at Bewl Water was even bigger and better than last year, seeing a record number of visitors. There was a fantastic array of attractions that the public participated in and it was satisfying to observe just how much water safety knowledge and awareness members of the public, especially the children, possessed but it goes without saying more prevention and awareness work is still needed. Of course, none of this would have been possible without all of the hard work and assistance of those involved from both East Sussex and Kent Fire and Rescue Services’, other partners and in particular the management team at Bewl Water for accommodating us. The event culminated in the eagerly awaited water rescue challenge between East Sussex and Kent teams, again proving to be a great visual spectacle, with the East Sussex team avenging their loss of last year, narrowly beating the Kent team to win the coveted trophy. All to play for next year!”
The two fire services were supported on the day by water safety partners – the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) and the Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) which both strive to drive down the number of water related injuries and deaths.
Water Safety- A key part of prevention
Susan Taylor (Water and Road Safety Co-ordinator) said: “This year’s Water Savvy Fun Day was a huge success with a record number of people attending and we were delighted to work in partnership with Kent Fire & Rescue Service and a great opportunity of multi-agency working, with support and attendance from RLSS, RNLI, KSAR and Kent Police.
Unfortunately Drowning in the UK is one of the leading causes of accidental deaths. There were 3 drownings in East Sussex during 2018, 9 drownings in 2017 and 16 drownings during 2016. We aim to further reduce these figures.
Water safety is a key part of prevention within East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service. We work with our partner agencies to ensure a greater public awareness of risks and to educate them to know what to do if they get into difficulty in water or find someone in trouble in water.
Innovative events such as the Water Savvy Fun Day, allow us to share vital water safety messages with children and adults alike, so that people can enjoy being near and in water safely and are aware of the associated risks.”
Click here for more information, advice and guidance on water safety and drowning prevention.