South Africa

Police warn community about incidents of drowning

The police in the province are calling on the community to be on high alert during this time of year whereby maximum and hot temperatures are experienced.

With the expectation of rainfalls and Christmas festivities, chances are that people will flock to picnic spots where there are streams, dams and rivers of which some will be overflowing. In the process of Christmas festivities, revellers will swim and due to failure to approach water with care, drowning incidents might be experienced.

Due to school holidays, this is also the period in which children drowning incidents are reported.  The police urge parents to closely monitor children as part of avoiding such incidents. The most important rule of water is that everyone should respect water, the water environment and the dangers involved.

The members of the community are requested to exercise caution and always be on the look-out for advisory signs in both natural and public water environments and to apply the following precautionary measures:

  • Do not get into water alone, unless you are a strong swimmer.
  • Children should never swim alone, but to be constantly supervised when they swim.
  • Ensure that the water depths are appropriate for swimming and diving.
  • Install a safety barrier around home swimming pools.
  • Empty baths, basins, sinks immediately after use.
  •  Do not duck or push others around water.


  • Never cross overflowing rivers.
  • Be careful not to stand on an overhanging bank.
  • Before entering the water, check for the presence and strength of a current.
  • If caught in a fast river current, float feet first in order to absorb any impact with the feet and legs, thus protecting the head and body from serious injury.
  • Extreme care should always be taken when entering rivers because of their changeable nature.

All drowning incidents must be reported at the nearest police station.

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