Keep your child safe this spring warns parents for its national Spring Clean campaign

03 April 2017

Parents are being urged to make their house water safe this spring as part of the UK’s drowning prevention charity’s campaign.

The Royal Life Saving Society UK’s (RLSS UK’s) Spring Clean Campaign warns parents to check their home for drowning risks as part of their spring clean routine and follow simple water safety advice.

Recorded drownings show that 42 children aged 0-4 years old have drowned in their own home or garden in the last five years*, with around 400 people drowning on average in the UK every year.

The Spring Clean campaign, running from 3 to 10 April, promotes water safety messages on social media and the media.

It is supported by RLSS UK ambassador Lucy Herd from Berkshire, who’s 23-month-old son Jack tragically drowned in their garden pond in August 2010.

She said: “I’ve decided to back this vital campaign again this year as I strongly believe that listening to RLSS UK’s water safety advice could prevent the loss of precious lives.

“Since losing Jack, I have been supporting RLSS UK in the delivery of water safety and drowning prevention messages to raise awareness of the dangers of water, particularly in the home.

“It only takes a split second for a tragedy to happen. Losing Jack has affected everyone in his life. I don’t want any more children to drown like Jack did.”

Di Steer, RLSS UK Chief Executive, said: “Even one child drowning at home is too many. These are preventable deaths and we need to keep shouting about the importance of home water safety.”

“Drowning can happen very quickly and in less than 2cm of water, so filled bath tubs, swimming pools, hot tubs and even buckets of water and sinks can be dangerous. There is a real risk of drowning in the home and garden.

“We would ask people to support the campaign and follow our simple advice to help ensure they and their families stay safe.”

One person dies every 20 hours in the UK and drowning is the third highest cause of accidental death of children in the UK. Thousands more suffer injury, some life-changing, through near-drowning experiences.

RLSS UK believes that the majority of drownings are preventable. Make sure that you and your loved-ones are not counted in next year’s drowning figures by following RLSS UK’s water safety advice for around the home.

RLSS UK’s advice:

  • Empty paddling pools and buckets as soon as they have been used. Always turn paddling pools upside down once empty
  • Securely cover all water storage tanks and drains
  • Always pull out the plug
  • Never leave children unattended at bath time. Empty the bath as soon as possible after use
  • Always put the bath plug up high and out of reach
  • Always keep the bathroom door shut
  • Always use self-closing gates, fences and locks to prevent children from gaining access to pools of water


If you’re taking part in our campaign, let us know on Twitter @RLSSUK #SpringClean and help us spread awareness to save lives.

If you have been affected my drowning and need further support, RLSS UK can fund counselling sessions. Please phone Porcha Treanor on 01789 774495.

*Stats taken from the WAID National Water Safety Forum reports.

Notes to Editors

Visit our website at

Follow us on Twitter – @RLSSUK, #SpringClean

Visit our Facebook page –

Call – 01789 773994

The Royal Life Saving Society UK (RLSS UK) is the drowning prevention charity.  Around 400 people drown in the UK every year and the RLSS UK aims to prevent drowning through water safety education.

Through its trading subsidiary, IQL UK, there are more than 90,000 RLSS UK Pool Lifeguards in the UK trained in the National Pool Lifeguard Qualification (NPLQ). Around 95 percent of all pool lifeguards are trained by the RLSS UK.

RLSS UK awards and programmes teach a range of lifesaving skills ranging from life support (CPR) to water survival and rescue skills. Programmes include Rookie Lifeguard (for eight to12-year–olds), Survive and Save (for 12 years+) and Save a Baby’s Life (a free course aimed at parents and carers of young children).

The RLSS UK (then the Life Saving Society) was formed in 1891. In 1904, as there was great support for the organisation from the Royal Family, the society was granted permission to use the Royal title and became the Royal Life Saving Society.

Drowning Prevention Week is the national campaign run by the Royal Life Saving Society UK to cut down the number of accidental drowning that occur each year and support families affected by drowning. The next campaign will run from June 18 – 26, 2017.

Jack’s Rainbow was created to help suddenly bereaved families create new memories after the death of a child after Lucy Herd lost her son, Jack through a sudden death in August 2010.

With over 20 years of training experience, Jack’s Rainbow offers training and awareness days for companies called ‘Talking is Healing’. This helps employers such as Line Managers and HR departments understand the need for compassion and understanding after the death of a loved one.

Jack’s Rainbow campaigns for statutory Bereavement Leave. Parents whose child has died are not entitled to any statutory leave. In the immediate aftermath of the death, parents have to cope not only with their own loss and the grief affecting their wider family (including any other children) and friends, but also a vast amount of administrative and other arrangements.

A sudden or accidental death may require a post mortem or inquest, there is a funeral to arrange and many other organisations to contact from schools to benefit offices.

Parents report that they cannot face returning to work, and that they would be unable to concentrate or perform their job effectively when faced with such challenges. Jack’s Rainbow has over 160,000 supporters who have signed their petition.

For more information and interview opportunities with RLSS UK spokesperson and Lucy Herd please contact Porcha Treanor on 01789 774 495 or email [email protected]