The Cambridges

Duke of Cambridge throws support behind Drowning Prevention Strategy for a #SaferThames



The Duke of Cambridge has thrown his support behind the Drowning Prevention Strategy for a #SaferThames – an initiative to prevent accidental drownings, self-harm and suicide attempts.

The Duke launched the #SaferThames yesterday, the same day he attended the Garden Party at Buckingham Palace alongside his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge and his grandmother, The Queen.

The Duke, who was travelling down the River Thames alongside representatives from the London Port Authority and Metropolitan Police, stressed the importance and significance of the river but also the dangers it poses.

He urged Londoners to check on those at the river who might be considering taking their own life. He stressed that people should not be “afraid to intervene” adding that a ‘Hello, how are you?’ can be all it takes to save someone’s life.

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As part of the launch, William remarked, “Every life lost and every life-changing accident is one too many. And that is why you are all gathered here today. To raise awareness of these dangers, and to work together to prevent them.

“Prevention includes practical measures to save lives. Providing and maintaining life-saving equipment along the river, and reducing opportunities to enter the Thames, is very very much needed. I saw some of that today on my journey here along the river.

“And of course prevention involves all Londoners. Everyday people, going about their commute or on their journey to the pub, have a hugely important role to play. Don’t be afraid to stop and intervene if you see someone who might be considering taking their own life.”

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The River Thames has defined London throughout its history. It is a place of work for many, and of great enjoyment for others. But we must not forget about the dangers the river poses. I was struck to learn that around 700 incidents take place along the Thames annually where people’s lives are at risk, either through accidents or as the result of suicide attempts. And each year, there are sadly more than 30 fatalities on the river. I have just been meeting with families who have lost loved ones on the river. Their stories are heart-breaking reminders of how important all your work is to keep the river safe. Every life lost and every life-changing accident is one too many. And that is why you are all gathered here today, to raise awareness of these dangers, and to work together to prevent them. Prevention includes practical measures to save lives. Providing and maintaining life-saving equipment along the river, and reducing opportunities to enter the Thames, is very very much needed. I saw some of that today on my journey here along the river. Prevention also includes the vital work done by so many front line staff. They help to keep the Thames safe, day in day out, in all sorts of weathers. I’m really pleased to have met some of these staff today, and to have heard about their dedication to prevent loss of life on the river. And of course prevention involves all Londoners. Everyday people, going about their commute or on their journey to the pub, have a hugely important role to play. Don’t be afraid to stop and intervene if you see someone who might be considering taking their own life. I am really pleased to be here today to help you launch #SaferThames, a hugely important piece of work to keep people safe and prevent drowning on the River Thames. The Drowning Prevention Strategy has been designed by the Port of London Authority, The Metropolitan Police, London Fire Brigade, RNLI, London Ambulance Service and the Maritime & Coastguard Agency. These agencies all work along the Thames, from Teddington to the North Sea, and have united to create the campaign to help tackle the problem. Visit pla.co.uk to find out more. 📷PA/Kensington Palace

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The Duke, who earlier met with families who have lost loved ones in the river, said he was pleased to be able to attend the launch and shared statistics regarding the incidents and fatalities that occur per year on the Thames. There are close to 700 incidents on the Thames with more than 30 deaths a year.

The Drowning Prevention Strategy was designed to tackle the problems that occur on the water each year by the Port of London Authority, London Fire Brigade, RNLI, The Metropolitan Police, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, and the London Ambulance Service.

You can learn more about the initiative by visiting pla.co.uk.



About author

Brittani is from Tennessee, USA. She is a political scientist and historian after graduating with a degree in the topics from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in December 2014. She also holds a master's degree from Northeastern University. She enjoys reading and researching all things regarding the royals of the world. Her love of royals began in middle school, and she's been researching, reading, and writing on royalty for over a decade. She became Europe Editor in October 2016, and then Deputy Editor in January 2019, and has been featured on several podcasts, radio shows, news broadcasts and websites.