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I am writing to you on behalf of the Mineral Products Association (MPA) to request your help with the prevention of accidental drowning. Circa 400 people drown each year in the UK – tragically a large number of these are young males. 44% of drownings occur between May and August and 62% of the fatalities occur at inland water sites such as rivers, reservoirs, lakes and quarries.

With the restrictions on overseas travel, we believe that there will be many more young people seeking to find places where they can enjoy water-based activities near their homes during the warmer weather and summer holidays. Whilst supportive of people enjoying the water, we are keen to raise awareness of the potential hazards associated with some inland waters such as quarry lakes. MPA is writing to your child’s school because it is located in an area where there are either active or former sites of minerals extraction where there are lakes or water filled voids. However, these messages are applicable to many types of water bodies.

Please help prevent drowning or other water based incidents where lives are at risk by sharing some general water safety messages and raising awareness of what one should do if you or a friend gets into trouble either at an inland water site or on the coast.

Last week the Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) ran National Drowning Prevention Week. As part of this campaign, they have produced some great resources to help promote key water safety messages. Please add your support to Drowning Prevention by using the excellent on-line resources for schools. They focus on giving individuals and families the skills and knowledge they need to enjoy the water, safely. More information can be found at www.rlss.org.uk/drowning-prevention-week The website has a page of resources to share with others which includes some  powerful videos  https://www.rlss.org.uk/pages/category/sharing-drowning-prevention-week

In addition to this, RLSS and  other organisations such as the RNLI,The Fire and Rescue Services, RoSPA, water utilities, other emergency services and  MPA are all working together to share a wide range of water safety messages under the collective umbrella of #Respect the Water.  These messages will appear throughout the summer. Please follow this link for more information  on the national water safety forums campaign or for the RNLI’s excellent Float to Live campaign  resources.

MPA is very supportive of these campaigns. Educating your pupils about these risks will not only help to keep them safe but, also, hopefully, will enable them to pass on the messages to their friends and other family members when enjoying water-based activities this Summer.

Please do not  hesitate to contact me should you require any further information or support and I would be grateful if you could follow this link to our website which explains more about our industry’s Stay Safe campaign and the free resources that are available. Follow this link to view our campaign Facebook page.

Yours sincerely

Elizabeth Clements
Director – Communications
Mineral Products Association

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