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Heading to the water to escape the heat?

Heading to the water to escape the heat? Keep an eye on children and loved ones.

With South Coast beaches and waterways becoming more and more popular during the Christmas break, Federal Member for Gilmore, Ann Sudmalis, is encouraging all families to keep a special eye on children and young people around the water this holiday season, especially as the mercury approaches 40 degrees along much of the coast.

“Our local surf lifesavers do a wonderful job in patrolling many of our beaches up and down the coast, but the reality is that they can’t be everywhere,” Mrs Sudmalis says.

“This summer has already seen too many drowning deaths across Australia. Whenever you’re at the beach, the river, or local pool, it’s important to keep an eye on children and loved ones near the water.

The Turnbull Government’s Reduce Drownings initiative is providing $15 million through to 2017-18 to Royal Life Saving Society Australia, Surf Life Saving Australia and AUSTSWIM for water safety initiatives, including teaching water safety to young children. An additional $11 million has also been allocated to Surf Life Saving Australia this year to improve volunteer training and upgrade equipment.

“While we’ve seen significant reductions in child drownings over the past few years, the sad reality is still that more than 280 people drowned at Australian beaches, pools and waterways in 2016,” Mrs Sudmalis said.

“These tragic figures highlight the need for us all to remain vigilant around water.”

“Education, awareness, and supervision around water – at home and on holidays – is essential to keep us and our loved ones safe this summer and beyond.” Media Release

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