Md. Officials Urge Water Safety After Deadly July 4th Weekend - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Md. Officials Urge Water Safety After Deadly July 4th Weekend

Posted:

ANNAPOLIS, Md.- Cool, refreshing, inviting—and potentially deadly.

“Maryland is blessed with many lakes and rivers and the Chesapeake Bay that are perfect spots to gather with friends and family to cool off,” said DNR Secretary Joe Gill. “But those places also can be dangerous if you aren’t prepared or you don’t respect the power of water.”

Maryland Natural Resources Police have investigated nine water-related fatalities so far this year. The total for all of last year was 19 fatalities. Those numbers do not include deaths handled by local jurisdictions, such as the two swimming fatalities in Ocean City last month, or accidents that occurred at private establishments, officials said.

This year, the victims range in age from 22 to 56. They include a commercial waterman, three swimmers, four men boating in protected waters and an inexperienced kayaker on a miles-wide stretch of the Potomac River.

NRP Superintendent Col. George F. Johnson IV said that while lifeguards and first responders are there to help people in distress, the best way to avoid trouble is to take responsibility for your own safety.

“Certainly, there are things that are beyond your control or simply can’t be anticipated,” Johnson said. “But by following common-sense guidelines developed by safety experts you can reduce your risk and pave the way to a trouble-free outing.”

Some tips from the experts:

Obey lifeguards and law enforcement officers. Heed warning signs and flags

Insist that young children or inexperienced swimmers wear a well-fitting Coast Guard-approved life jacket in and the around water

Make sure an adult watches children and the elderly when at water’s edge. Keep young children within arm’s reach. If more than one adult is in attendance, take turns being the “Designated Kid Watcher.”

Swim sober and never swim alone

Stay alert and check local weather conditions. Carry a cellphone.

Make sure you have enough energy to swim back to shore

If you get caught in a rip current, stay calm and don’t fight the current. Swim parallel to the shore until you are out of the current. Once you are free, turn and swim toward shore. If you can’t swim to the shore, float or tread water until you are free of the rip current and then head toward shore.

If you see someone in trouble in the water, get help from a lifeguard. If a lifeguard is not available, have someone call 9-1-1. Throw the victim something that floats – a lifejacket, cooler, even a beach ball.

 

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Shoreline Under Repair Along NASA Wallops Flight Facility

    Shoreline Under Repair Along NASA Wallops Flight Facility

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 12:05 AM EDT2014-07-23 04:05:19 GMT
    For more than one year, the Atlantic Ocean has been chewing up a zone that protects NASA's most critical launch assets on Wallops Island. Hurricane Sandy is to blame. Now, a coastal restoration project is underway to fix the damage on the coastline.More
    For more than one year, the Atlantic Ocean has been chewing up a zone that protects NASA's most critical launch assets on Wallops Island. Hurricane Sandy is to blame. Now, a coastal restoration project is underway to fix the damage on the coastline.More
  • Second Public Hearing Brings More Opposition

    Second Public Hearing Brings More Opposition

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 11:24 PM EDT2014-07-23 03:24:04 GMT
    When Planning and Zoning held their public hearing on July 10, hundreds of people came out to voice their support and opposition to a country music festival in the Harbeson area. Approximately two weeks later on Tuesday afternoon about 100 showed up to voice their opinion, primarily in opposition. The County Council heard from dozens of neighbors who said they were staunchly against the festival, citing potential problems with noise, traffic, pollution, and crime.More
    When Planning and Zoning held their public hearing on July 10, hundreds of people came out to voice their support and opposition to a country music festival in the Harbeson area. Approximately two weeks later on Tuesday afternoon about 100 showed up to voice their opinion, primarily in opposition. The County Council heard from dozens of neighbors who said they were staunchly against the festival, citing potential problems with noise, traffic, pollution, and crime.More
  • Del. Police See High Crime Clearance Rate

    Del. Police See High Crime Clearance Rate

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 1:27 AM EDT2014-07-23 05:27:14 GMT
    The Dover Police Department says its criminal investigations unit could see its best clearance rate in five years.More
    The Dover Police Department says its criminal investigations unit could see its best clearance rate in five years.More
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Two Killed in Del. Crash

    Two Killed in Del. Crash

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 11:45 AM EDT2014-07-22 15:45:19 GMT
    Delaware State Police say two Dover men were killed Monday night after the tow truck they were riding in went off the road and crashed into a telephone pole near Little Creek.More
    Delaware State Police say two Dover men were killed Monday night after the tow truck they were riding in went off the road and crashed into a telephone pole near Little Creek. More
  • Updated: Fire Ruins Historical Hebron Church

    Updated: Fire Ruins Historical Hebron Church

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 11:33 PM EDT2014-07-23 03:33:21 GMT
    Fire has destroyed the historical St. Paul's Episcopal Church located on westbound Route 50 in Hebron.More
    Authorities are investigating a Tuesday fire that destroyed the historical St. Paul's Episcopal Church at the corner of Memory Gardens Lane and Route 50 in Hebron, Md. Preliminary damage is estimated at approximately $500,000.More
  • Stolen Hotel Painting Found

    Stolen Hotel Painting Found

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 11:28 PM EDT2014-07-23 03:28:53 GMT
    A portrait was stolen Sunday evening from the Dunes Manor Hotel, but it's been returned.More
    A portrait was stolen Sunday evening from the Dunes Manor Hotel, but it's been returned.More
Powered by WorldNow

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service