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Working towards making Sri Lanka free from drowning

January 05, 2022

The Sri Lanka Coast Guard (SLCG) continues to share commitments to improve public safety in and around waterfronts to make Sri Lanka free from drowning. Our work especially in the area of coastal drowning prevention and surf safety is only made possible by the passion and professionalism of Coast Guard Life Savers who are trained from Life Saving Training School (LSTS). The situation that prevailed in 2021 was not much conducive for beachgoers; however, with the successful progress of the vaccination process of the government, the people were freed steadily from the grip of COVID-19. Eventually, beaches have been started to outpour by locals and foreign nationals, showing a positive sign of restoring the tourism industry.

In view of strengthening public safety measures in beachfront LSTS continued lifesaving training adhering to COVID-19 prevention guidelines to promote water safety awareness to reduce drowning and other aquatic accidents by improving swimming competency, rescue skills, and emergency first aid, which in return have been credited in the way of maintaining unhindered safety measures at 18 lifesaving posts manned by the SLCG around the country.

Attentiveness and the commitment of the SLCG lifesavers deployed in lifesaving posts were ensued to rescue 96 precious lives from undue deaths by drowning at the end of 2021. During these successful rescue attempts, there were 82 locals and 14 foreign nationals brought back to life and reunited with their loved ones. Among the local crowd there were 67 males and 15 females meanwhile, there were 10 males and 4 females recorded drowned in foreign nationals. These statistics indicate that males have been exposed to a higher risk of drowning which was reported as 77 during 2021. The most reason causes for higher drawing incidents among males have been identified as consumption of alcohol, being overconfident in dealing with sea, lack of water safety knowledge, and swimming ability.

Having these statistics into consideration the Director General, Sri Lanka Coast Guard has been directed and facilitated to expand the lifesaving training and to produce more lifesavers, and introduce society-based training opportunities to improve water safety knowledge of the public.

So far, Sri Lanka Coast Guard lifesavers have rescued a total of 1632 invaluable lives including 712 foreigners in a number of successful rescue attempts.

Courtesy - www.coastguard.gov.lk