Awareness alert before annual update

BISHTA has been providing awareness of an alert by the National Water Safety Forum to help reduce accidental drownings by half in the next three years ahead of its annual Information and Networking Day.

With 46 per cent of UK accidental drownings in 2022 taking place in the three summer months of June, July and August, BISHTA has promoted a reminder by the National Water Safety Forum (NWSF) for people to ‘Respect the Water’ during this time of year when water temperatures can remain dangerously cold despite periods of warm weather such as the ‘Indian Summer’ temperatures in the first week of September.

Statistics and figures from the Water Incident Database (WAID), which is maintained by the NWSF, have revealed that there were 226 accidental fatalities in the UK in 2022, with 105 in the summer months, and 83 per cent were males. Recreational activities accounted for 58 per cent of accidental fatalities.

NWSF Chair & CEO East Sussex Fire Rescue Service Dawn Whittaker has highlighted that there is a target of halving the UK’s accidental drownings by 2026

“We are promoting the #RespectTheWater campaign to help people stay safe while still enjoying their time in and by the water,” said Dawn.

“These devastating numbers are an annual tragic reminder about the importance of raising awareness of water safety and drowning prevention, so we urge the public to understand the dangers and to learn the importance of knowing what to do in an emergency: if you see someone in trouble in the water, the best way you can help is by staying calm, staying on land, and following the 3-step rescue guide – Call, Tell, Throw.

“We have seen increased numbers participating in water sports and water-based activities and
consequently a rise of the number of incidents associated with activities such as Stand-up Paddleboarding and Open Water Swimming. We want people to enjoy the water safely, so we will continue to focus on guidance, education, and awareness for the public.

“We will continue to work together to reduce deaths caused by drowning and water-related injuries in the UK, and endeavour to reach our collective goal of halving accidental drownings in the UK by 2026. The global water safety community is onboard with a UN resolution recognising the scale and burden of drowning, calling for urgent international action.”

Leading up to the annual Information and Networking Day on September 27, BISHTA also recently promoted World Drowning Prevention Day in July and has been calling on hot tub and swim spa retailers to raise awareness of safety around water activities, as well as highlighting that a consumer factsheet is available on safety for members to share on social media and website posts.

During the Information and Networking Day morning, being hosted in Andover and online from 9am to 12.30pm, there will be updates on HSG282 with the focus on legionella testing in hot tub holiday accommodation, pictured, and holiday parks, along with shared information from Trading Standards Officers.

The event will also focus on the importance of promoting equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and is scheduled to incorporate the AGM with an open forum to allow attendees to share their views and ask additional questions to BISHTA Managing Director Chris Hayes.

BISHTA members can reserve their place ahead of September 27 via email at: