ALCOHOL is involved with 18 per cent of all drowning deaths and in those deaths, almost half of the people who drowned (49 per cent) had a blood alcohol reading four times the legal limit or higher.
Member for Paterson, Bob Baldwin attended the launch of the Royal Life Saving National Drowning Report at Parliament House this week and learnt this as well as other alarming statistics from the report.
The report reveals 266 lives were lost to drowning between 1 July 2013 and 30 June 2014 and shows inland waterways including rivers, lakes and dams, are the leading location for drowning deaths.
“As a boatie, I take every opportunity to get out on the water. I was surprised to find out the rate of drowning deaths in Australia was so high, especially those involving alcohol,” said Mr Baldwin.
Mr Baldwin said the new report outlines the tragic loss of life to drowning in communities around the nation, and that it is happening in waterways of all types.
Royal Life Saving CEO, Justin Scarr said he welcomes the support of the Federal Government who are backing a Royal Life Saving plan to target drowning prevention in rivers across Australia, educate swimmers, boaters and fishers, and reduce the impacts of alcohol.
“The downward trend is certainly promising but having set the goal of reducing drowning by 50 per cent by 2020, Australians clearly have a long way to go,” said Justin Scarr.
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