Do you live or work near to the coast? Want to help the RNLI with coastal safety?
Do you live or work near to the coast? If so you could be involved with the RNLI in producing innovative Water Safety Sand Signage.
When will you be asked to do this?
These signs are used to highlight local hazards and conditions so when you will be asked to do this can be variable. You will be linked with a local member of the RNLI Lifesaving team to identify times and patterns when this signage will be effective.
The RNLI are looking for support from within the local communities to deliver this; together the RNLI truly believes that they can save lives. Over half the people that get into trouble in the water didn’t expect to get wet. The RNLI needs support from local people to deliver this timely, adaptable messaging.
Interested in signing up?
Simply click below on this link and follow the instructions
Although we give out a lot of advice about how to check for tide times, we still get a lot of enquiries about the fundamental issue of ‘what is a High and Low tide’. Here we try to explain this a simply as possible.
Essentially, tides are the rise and fall of the levels of the ocean. Tides change as the Moon rotates around the Earth and as the position of the Sun changes. Throughout the day, the sea level is continuously rising or falling. This cycle can happen once or twice a day, depending on the location of the area to the Moon.
When the sea level is rising or falling, water is flowing to or from the ocean creating the following tides:
High tide is the point in the tidal cycle where the sea level is at its highest.
Low tide is the point in the tidal cycle where the sea level is at its lowest.
There are other tides called Spring and Neap tides. A Spring Tide occurs when the Sun and the Moon are aligned to combine for the largest tidal range of the highest high tide and the lowest Low Tide. A Neap tide is when the tidal range is at its smallest. This occurs during the first and third quarters of the Moon.
It is important to know the difference of these tides when planning your activities around the coast. You could become stranded if you misjudged the tides when walking or running around the coast.
Lockdown Water Safety – Do You Enjoy Your Running or Walking? Do You Know What To Do If You Fell Into Cold Water?
With an increase in the number of people pulling on their trainers or walking boots for their unlimited daily exercise in England by themselves or with one other person, the RNLI are urging people to heed the advice if anyone who finds themselves unexpectedly in cold water to ‘float to live’. Getting out into the fresh air for a walk or run is an excellent way of grabbing some exercise and or valuable ‘headspace’ time away from work or the stresses and strains of modern everyday life. But, knowing what to do should you get into difficulty in water is essential.
A recent incident near Blackburn involving a runner who accidentally fell into a canal who helped to save her own life by using the ‘Float to Live’ safety drill enforces the RNLI’s water safety campaign ‘Respect the Water’ very effectively. Fortunately, the Aggie the runner who knew the route well escaped unhurt and without the need for hospitalisation. You can view the interview below which Aggie gave to the RNLI below explaining how she remembered the ‘Float to Live’ principle after seeing it advertised on television.
Chris Cousens, one of the RNLI’s Water Safety Lead’s, said “annual coastal fatality figures reveal over half (55%) of those who died at the coast in 2018 ended up in the water unexpectedly – a figure that has remained consistent in recent years. Chris says:
‘Aggie’s story really does prove the charity’s Float to Live advice is just as relevant inland as it is on the coast. Coastal fatality figures sadly show that many of those who lose their lives did not plan on entering the water.
Slips, trips and falls can catch people unaware while out running or walking. Knowing what to do if you fall into cold water, whether inland or at the coast, can be the difference between life and death.
‘The instinctive human reaction when you fall into cold water can cause panic and gasping for breath, increasing the chances of breathing in water. Although it’s counter intuitive, the best immediate course of action is to fight your instinct and float on your back. More tragic water-related deaths can be avoided by knowing the risks and remembering theFloat technique, just as Aggie did.
Coastal and Inland Water ways
Float to Live is something that you can use equally at the coast, as you can in a river, canal, loch, quarry or lake. The short video above will demonstrate how to conduct ‘Float to Live’.
Water Safety Reminders
Here is a reminder if you are setting out for a lovely walk or run or any other outdoor activity which is close to water:
Check the weather and tides
Carry a ‘calling for help’ device such as a fully charged mobile phone in a waterproof case
Tell someone where you are going and what time you will be back
Wear the right clothing/equipment for the activity
Read and take heed of any warning signage at the entrance to beaches
Be aware of your surroundings at all times
Be aware of slips and trips, keeping to recognised coastal paths
Don’t enter the water should you get cut off by the tide, shout for help
If you do unexpectedly find yourself in the water float on your back until you get your breath
If you see an animal or person in difficulty in the water dial ‘999’ at the coast or on the River Thames and ask for the Coastguard or if inland the Fire Service giving an accurate location
Regularly at events we are asked what is the best way to check the tide times? There are a variety of websites and smart device app’s available which are free to download and use to check the tides. Shops, cafe’s and other harbour/marina establishments regularly stock paper copies of tide tables which are available for a nominal fee or a donation to the local lifeboat station. A special mention should be made of ‘Spring Tides’ at this point in the blog. Spring Tides can result in people getting easily cut-off by the incoming tide including places where there normally isn’t an issue. For more information go to our blog on different tides.
Some lifeboat station’s also display the tide times on their external notice board’s. Many lifeboat station’s, Coastguard teams and National Coastwatch station’s publish tide times and safety advice on a regular basis on their social media channels. Both Ramsgate and Margate lifeboat station’s publish tide times.
We have included anumber of websites and ap’s below to give you an idea which ones are available.
You maybe visiting the coast to enjoy a lovely walk with your friends or family, partake in some bird watching, go climbing, kayaking, paddle boarding, sailing, swimming, surfing or just take in the sea from a cafe or coffee shop. Whatever activity you are taking part in why not remind yourself about some safety tips which could help save your life below:
Always carry a ‘calling for help device’ such as a fully charged mobile phone or VHF radio
If you are going out on your own tell someone where you are going and what time you will be back
Wear the right clothing for the activity. If you are enjoying time on the water always wear a fully serviced lifejacket.
Check the weather forecast
If you get into difficulty dial ‘999’ or ‘112’ and ask for the Coastguard
Don’t enter the water if you get cut-off by the tide, call for help
Heed any warning signs that are displayed at the coast or on beaches
Be aware of your surroundings at all times as conditions can change quickly without warning
If you end up in the water Float On Your Back until you get your breath back – Float To Live
Ian Lockyer (RNLI Community Safety Advisor) says “we want everyone to enjoy the coast and get as much out of your visit as possible. But, making a few preparations and having a plan should things go wrong will help save your life”.
Saturday saw the fabulous Ramsgate RNLI Fundraisers Mayday Coffee Morning raising funds for new lifeboat crew kit. The coffee morning included free tours around the lifeboats, bric a brac stands, the super RNLI shop, lovely cake and coffee; and of course our Community Safety team sharing key safety messages. It was lovely to see Councillor Raushan Ara (Thanet District Councillor for Ramgsate) pop by and have a chat with our team. Raushan is hugely supportive of our team’s drowning prevention work and that of the RNLI and it was fabulous to have the opportunity to chat with her. Our team hugely enjoyed the morning chatting to visitors about water safety.
One of the most important safety messages we talked about was the recent tidal cut-off’s in and around Kingsgate Bay. Our top tips when visiting the coast are:
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