Life Saving Victoria (LSV) and Parks Victoria are working together to share key safety messages around Pier Jumping. We are reminding Victorians to think before they jump or dive from piers and jetties this summer to minimise the risk of spinal cord injury.
Each year there are 350-400 new cases of spinal cord injuries reported and 9% of these are caused by water-related accidents.
Parks Victoria District Manager, Graeme Davis says that despite regular patrols of piers and upgraded signage across Port Phillip and Western Port, people are not listening to the warnings and serious injuries are still regularly occurring.
“Diving from piers and jetties might seem like a good idea on a hot day but in reality it is an extremely dangerous practice.”
“People don’t realise that water depths change daily as a result of the tides, sand movement and submerged debris such as shopping trolleys are unexpected hazards,” said Mr Davis.
Independence Australia, CEO, Peter Turner, notes that young men in particular are ignoring the warnings and not thinking before they jump or dive around waterways.
“Males aged 15 – 35 years are at the highest risk of acquiring a spinal cord injury, yet the most common causes of these which are water/diving related activities and road accidents – are preventable,” said Mr Turner.
We are encouraging people to find a safe point from which to enter the water to swim and enjoy the beach this summer.
LSV’s Education team have updated the Open Water Learning experience (OWLE) program to include these important safety messages. LSV hope to deliver the program to 12,000+ students across the state this summer.
For more information regarding Pier Jumping including videos and key messages which may be useful for your classroom, please visit the following websites