People need to be more aware of beach danger

PEOPLE need to be better educated about the potential hazards of going in the sea when they cannot swim said Coroner Alan Craze.

Mr Craze spoke out following the death of a 31 year old woman who drowned in the sea at Camber Sands.

He praised the beach team and local police officers who fought to save the woman and said there was adequate information signage on the beach at Camber.

Mr Craze said: “This happened because people who were not experienced encountered decisions they were not used to.

“They got out of their depth mentally rather than the literal depth of the water.

“There is room for improvement, mot at a beach level but in the minds of parents and teachers who educate people and can teach our children that there are some places which can be more dangerous than others.”

Camber beach officer Rob Cass said: “The sea is not a swimming pool but a moving body of water subject to environmental changes. The message is if you nare in any doubt as to your ability then don’t go in the water.

“It is difficult to explain how this happened. The only hazards are off shore winds, which were not present in this case, and sand bars.

“There was a slight sand bar here but not a great difference in depth - 12 inches at the most.

“We have been risk assessed by th RNLI and Camber is one of th safest beaches in the country. It is a well resourced beach compared to Dymchurch and other beaches on the coast.

“I have seen worse conditions when there have been 25,000 people on the beach and nothing happened.

“To understand how four people got into difficulty in those conditions is puzzling .

“The public’s ;lack of personal responsibility is increasing. I am kept busy all day by people’s lack of responsibility and naievety.

“People tend to take it foregranted that they will be looked after wherever they are and that is a false sense of security.

“There are signs on the beach and warning flags but I would agree that around 75 percent of people do not pay them any attention. I am not sure how you get over that.”

“Statistically Camber is one of the safest beaches in the country.”