OPEN WATER SWIMMING
• Always try to choose a lifeguarded beach and swim between the red and yellow flags. If you can’t make it to a lifeguarded beach, learn more about your chosen location before you go, and read local hazard signs.
• Check weather forecast and tide times.
• Always carry a means of calling for help. You must be able to reach it in an emergency. Consider taking a mobile phone with the SafeTrx app.
• Acclimatise to cold water slowly and enter gradually to reduce the risk of cold water shock. Always swim parallel to the shore and not straight out. Cold water and currents can tire you quickly and make it harder to return to shore.
• Always consider using a tow float, and wear a brightly coloured swim hat. This will increase your visibility in the water. Consider wearing a head torch if swimming in times of low light.
• Tell someone else where you’re going and when you’ll be back. They can raise the alarm with the coastguard by calling 999 or 112 if you are overdue.
• Never swim alone or under the influence of alcohol, medication or drugs.
• If you see someone in trouble, call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.