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Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service are reminding the public about the dangers of open water swimming

Firefighter floating in the water

Yesterday afternoon (May 10), just before 5pm, NFRS were called to reports of three young people in the water by Chatsworth Road, Corby.

Upon arrival, the crew found that the people in the water weren’t in any immediate difficulty but still should not have been putting themselves at risk by going into the water. Once leaving the water they received safety advice from firefighters.

White Watch Corby and Neighbourhood Wardens from North Northamptonshire Council are going back to the area this afternoon to share water safety advice with local residents.

Even in warmer weather, open water can be extremely cold. The temperature of the water can be as low as 15 degrees Celsius, even with the sun out. This increases the risk of both cold water shock and drowning.

Here are some tips on how to stay safe while swimming in the open water and avoid any incidents:

  • Get to know where you are swimming and check the conditions before going in
  • Make sure you are properly equipped and beware of the cold
  • Make sure someone knows where you have gone and why, and that you have the means to call for help, especially in remote locations
  • Take note of local safety advice and respect the countryside, landowners and other users
  • Download the what3words app on your phone so you can give specific location advice to emergency services if you get into trouble
  • If you get stuck in the water with cold body shock, try and float on your back in a star shape and allow the shock to pass. Do not try and fight against it
  • If you see another person or animal in the water, you should NOT enter water yourself to rescue them. Call 999 and ask for the fire service immediately
  • In most cases an animal will make it back to safety, sadly this is not always the case for an owner
  • Try and throw a floating device such as a throw line or an inflatable to help any people who are struggling in the water

Our Prevention Team offer Waterside Responder Training to businesses located near open water. The training course gives practical skills to members of staff to help anyone who finds themselves in difficulty in the water. If this is something your business would be interested in, please email

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