Police in Selby have issued a warning to youngsters not to risk their lives by jumping into the canal.
Officers have received reports of young people jumping off the A63 bridge into the canal during the recent warm weather. With an average of 40 children drowning each year in the UK, police are urging parents to drive home the message of how deadly this can be.
Inspector Michelle Falkingham of Selby Safer Neighbourhood Team, said:
We don’t want to stifle anyone’s sense of adventure or spoil their fun, but, this is an extremely dangerous thing to do.
There could be hidden debris under the surface, you cannot judge the depth of the water and the cold could send your body into shock. Any pollution in the water could make you ill and it can be difficult to get out again.
It doesn’t matter if you are a good swimmer, if your body goes into shock from the cold water, its natural defences will kick in. Beginning with hyperventilation, followed by the body shutting down to protect its vital organs, muscles will go into cramp and you will be unable to stay afloat. You will then sink below the surface and if help doesn’t arrive within seconds, you will drown. That is the stark reality.
I’m appealing to Selby’s parents and carers, to please make sure your children stay safe by warning them of the dangers of jumping into any body of water. Only recently we have seen two tragic deaths in other parts of the country. Please don’t let us see another one in Selby, or anywhere else for that matter.
More safety information is available on the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents’ (RoSPA) website. www.rospa.com/leisuresafety