Yorkshire Water reminds people not to swim in reservoirs as weather continues to heat up

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With warmer weather expected over the next few days, Yorkshire Water is reminding people of the dangers of open water and to resist the temptation of entering reservoirs.

Despite reservoirs looking inviting when the weather is warm, cold water shock can be a killer as well as there are hidden dangers in open water areas such as rivers, reservoirs, canals and seas.

Algae in the water can also cause rashes and stomach upsets.

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According to the Royal Life Saving Society UK, 226 people died in the UK in 2021 after getting into water-related difficulty at locations such as rivers, canals, lakes, reservoirs, and quarries.

David Longbottom, raw water manager at Yorkshire Water said: “We’ve had a number of reports of people swimming in our reservoirs over the last few days and I’d like to remind people not to take risks by getting into the water.

“You shouldn’t underestimate the risk our reservoirs can pose to your life, and sadly, over the years people have died after entering open water.

"The water in the reservoirs might look inviting on a warm day, but entering it can cause cold water shock and reservoirs are a part of the clean water network delivering water to homes, which means there is equipment under the water that also poses a risk to people entering it.

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“We want you to remain safe and enjoy walking around our reservoirs, but please refrain from entering the water.”

Anyone at a Yorkshire Water reservoir who sees someone in difficulty in the water should:

  • Ring 999 and ask for the Fire Service immediately
  • Encourage the person to stay calm and to kick their legs gently to float
  • Don't enter the water yourself as you may also get into difficulty
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