A Staggering 30 Drownings Have Been Recorded In 26 Days
Surf Life Saving Australia has renewed its calls for awareness of dangerous beach conditions after widespread drownings across the country.
They are urging people to swim between the flags and only swim at patrolled beaches.
"Do you sometimes feel out of your depth at the beach? If you don’t know, don’t go," Surf Life Saving Australia wrote on Facebook on Thursday.
Thirty people have been confirmed dead after drowning in waterways across Australia in just 26 days this December.
In Victoria, four people have drowned in the last three days.
On Thursday morning, a man's body was pulled from a waterfall rock pool in the Grampians National Park in Victoria. He died when he fell into the pool on Boxing Day and drowned.
On Christmas Eve, a mother watched as her husband and her 20-year-old son drowned in dangerous surf at Woolamai Beach on Phillip Island. Her 11-year-old son managed to pull himself from the water, but the other two men died at the scene.
The situation isn't much better in New South Wales.
A Korean international student lost his life on Christmas Day after going snorkelling on the NSW South Coast. His body was pulled from the water at Lake Conjola after he went missing. The man, who was in Australia on a tourist visa, was declared dead at the scene.
READ MORE: Christmas Day Drowning On NSW South Coast
Shortly before Christmas, three people drowned after being trapped in dangerous waters at Moonee Beach at Coffs Harbour in northern NSW. Six members of the same family were swimming at the unpatrolled beach when the tide picked up quickly. Two men died when they got caught in the waters and a third went missing. His was body was recovered days after the initial incident.
Just days later, another swimmer drowned at the same beach. A 60-year-old Swiss national was pulled unconscious from the water and was later declared dead.
Heatwave Has Lifesavers Worried
The heatwave sweeping the country has water safety authorities worried weeks before it hit.
The long stretch of hot temperatures between 30 and 40 degrees mean more people will seek to cool off at Aussie beaches.
“Big influxes of people descending on our beaches, coinciding with some possible extreme hot weather next week is the perfect storm, unfortunately," Surf Life Saving NSW CEO Steven Pearce said in a statement last Friday.
Emergency services and water authorities continue to urge beachgoers not to overestimate their swimming ability and not to venture too far into the surf if they are unable to manage rough waters.
Alcohol And Water A Deadly Combination For Men
Research released last month by Royal Life Saving Australia found of the 1,087 people who drowned in rivers, streams and creeks over the past 15 years, 80 percent were men.
Of that number, more than half had been drinking.
In 2017/18, around half of coastal drowning deaths occurred at beaches, with 24 percent occurring offshore and 20 percent on rocks or cliffs. Drug and alcohol consumption was involved in 20 percent of these deaths.
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