19th March

Plea to public to only swim at recognised recreational areas

The Irish Coast Guard is urging people not to engage in activities that put themselves at risk by diving or swimming in places that are not "recognised recreational areas" and may pose underwater dangers not readily obvious.

"Swimmers are literally jumping into the unknown, and there may be submerged objects that are not visible and may cause serious injury," warns Declan Geoghegan, manager ICG.


Lifeguards are employed during the summer period (June to August),usually from noon until 6pm, Monday to Friday and 11am to 6pm, Saturday and Sunday. Photo Gillian Mills

The Irish Coast Guard is advising people to only swim at beaches and waterways where lifeguards are on duty, to obey the safety flags indicating whether it is safe to swim, and to always avoid swimming in locks and weirs.

"With the warmer weather over the last few days many people are taking to the water and enjoying outdoor activities. Last year the Irish Coast Guard saw an increase in incidents, and incidents are up again this year.

 "It is extremely important that people take extra precaution with regard to personal safety when engaging in water activities, especially where young children are concerned," he added.

Safety advice

  • Ask the Lifeguard for advice about safety and water conditions and adhere to their instructions 
  • Never go out on the water, including rivers and lakes, having consumed alcohol
  • Be able to swim. Get the proper training to stay safe
  • Never go out alone
  • Familiarise yourself with the local area, be aware of your own capabilities
  • Swim parallel to the shore and not in deep water
  • Keep warm before and after swimming
  • Have a means of alerting the emergency services
  • Avoid using inflatable toys, such as lilos and rubber rings, on the water

Cliff walking

There is safety in numbers, so never be alone if possible. Let somebody know when and where you are going and what time you will be back. Stay well away from the cliff edge, both top and bottom.Don’t attempt to rescue people or pets if they fall over the edge.

If assistance is required dial 112/999 and ask for the Coast Guard

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