12 August 2013
Jersey Fire and Rescue are reminding people to avoid swimming if they've been drinking alcohol after two women were rescued at Havre des Pas on Saturday night (10 July).
The two women were rescued in separate incidents, only 40 minutes apart. On each occasion the rescued person had been drinking. Emergency calls were received by Jersey Coastguard from concerned members of the public called after seeing a person swimming fully clothed, seemingly under the influence of alcohol.
On both occasions the casualty was close enough to shore for a rescue to be carried out without use of the inshore rescue boat. In the first incident, two Jersey Fire and Rescue personnel waded out to the intoxicated swimmer and assisted her back to shore. On the second occasion the swimmer was 30 to 40 metres from the shore and was brought safely back by a rescue swimmer. Both incidents were handed over to officers from States Police.
Crew Commander Andy Gallie said "Both of these incidents could easily have ended in tragedy, as swimming under the influence of alcohol has the potential to be extremely dangerous. Alcohol significantly impairs your judgement and co-ordination and even the strongest swimmers can be at serious risk of drowning. Even during the summer months, sea temperatures are such that the onset of hypothermia can occur relatively quickly, even more so after the consumption of large amounts of alcohol."