Summer in Bahrain is the perfect time to cool off and enjoy the beautiful beaches and swimming pools that the country has to offer. However, it is important to prioritize safety when it comes to swimming, especially during the hot summer months, cautions Bahrain’s official water safety agency, the Royal Life Saving Bahrain (RLSB).
“Beaches are a community asset, and we want to see everyone engaging in water related activities,” RLSB general manager Sam Rahman told Bahrain This Week.
“By providing safe locations for members of the community to enjoy the water, people can now visit beaches that have been risk assessed and have a fully equipped lifeguard team on hand to educate visitors, and perform rescues and other lifesaving skills in the event of an emergency.”
The RLSB registered no serious drowning incidents last year at the Bahrain beaches where it offers lifeguard services. These beaches recorded a combined visitation of more than half a million visitors, as per RLSB statistics.
“In the past 12 months, we have expanded our full-time Beach lifeguard Service to six locations across Bahrain. Our team is made up of 35 internationally certified beach lifeguards and can be found at Bilaj Al Jazayer, Solymar, Marassi, Vida, Address, and Golden Beach. We strongly encourage families to swim at beaches with Lifeguard services.”
RLSB also continues its Rookie Junior Beach Life Saving Club at Budaiya Beach, which has trained more than 600 children in the last two years, while it is soon launching the second one near Dilmunia. The program for children aged 5 to 16 focuses on life-saving skills, teamwork and leadership, health and fitness, and community and environment.
“By training children in these valuable life skills at an early age, we know that they will be better aware of staying safe while in and around water, and more importantly, they will be equipped with the skills, knowledge, and confidence to save themselves and others. “
Mr Rahman cautioned on the need for adhering to utmost safety to ensure a pleasant swimming experience. “During the warmer summer months, we sadly see the highest number of drowning-related incidents in swimming pools as more people engage in water-related activities and utilise the many pools for private hire across the island,” he said. “There are many things that people can do to make sure that they and their loved ones are safe this summer.”
He endorsed the importance of proper supervision and lifeguarding in ensuring summer safety at pools and beaches.
“The responsibility of supervising children remains with the parents, and lifeguard’s role is to ensure that parents are correctly supervising their children at all times. It takes as little as 20 seconds for a child to drown, which is why it is essential that adults do not become distracted or leave children unattended at any time.”
RLSB plays a major role in raising awareness of water safety and empowering the public with lifesaving skills. By attending as little as three hours of training, people can learn how to prevent accidents and perform CPR and other lifesaving skills, helping them to keep their own families safe.
“In December, we launched a new initiative called the Safer Community Partnership, which was joined by more than 30 ministries, private companies, and schools,” explained Mr Rahman.
“It creates a platform for greater collaboration on a range of activities to help empower communities with lifesaving skills. We are very excited to be working on a number of exciting projects that will help us continue to improve water safety in Bahrain.”
SWIMMING SAFETY TIPS FROM RLSB:
- Try to swim in locations with lifeguard
- If renting a pool, check that the pool has
safety signage, a first aid kit and rescue
equipment available. Ask if there is a first
- Get first aid trained.
- Supervise children at all times.
- Prevent unauthorised access to the pool.
- Never leave anything in the pool – remove
all toys and inflatables from the pool