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Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Police warn of quarry pool swimming danger

A campaign aimed at highlighting the dangers of swimming in quarry pools has been launched by North Wales Police.

Working in partnership with construction materials company Hanson, which operates five quarries in North Wales, the campaign warns children and young people to stay away from water-filled quarries as schools close for the summer.



The warning comes after North Wales Police were recently requested to carry out a safety audit at one of Hanson UK’s quarries in the Mold area due to concerns of people trespassing.

Superintendent Jane Banham, Head of Community Safety at North Wales Police said: “Sadly over recent years there have been tragedies in the region whereby people have gotten into difficulty after entering quarry pools.

“The water is extremely cold and the hidden dangers are immense which can quickly lead to something altogether more serious.

“Although it can be very tempting to jump into the nearest pool or lake to cool down on a hot day, or to swim in the water at disused quarries, the water depths are huge – up to 60 metres – and it can be very difficult to get out due to the steep faces.

“As well as the dangers associated with swimming at unsupervised and often remote places, jumping from the rocks also puts people in danger.

“Swimming at disused quarries is a very dangerous practice and I would appeal to all youngsters and anyone else to please stay away.”

Members of the public are also being reminded that quarries are private properties and anybody found swimming or on the rocks would be trespassing.

Supt Banham added: “We want people to enjoy themselves over the summer but to keep safe. Not only is the water temperature freezing but it can also contain hidden hazards such as debris, weeds and reeds that you may not be able to see from the surface.

“The water can also be very deep and swimmers can easily find themselves out of their depth. If you are thinking about going swimming in such places please think again, consider the dangers and don’t trespass.”

Hanson Communications Manager David Weeks added: “We work very hard to ensure our sites are secure and carry out regular patrols of the boundaries to check and repair fencing. The fences and warning signs are there for a reason – please respect them.”

Hanson are also planning to add dye to the water at its site near Mold to act as a further deterrent to swimmers.

PC Hazel Goss, from the Eastern Community Safety Department said: “We’ve been working closely with Hanson UK to try and deter people from trespassing on their land to access the quarry pools.

“Over the years we’ve even had reports of families ignoring the dangers to spend the day at these quarries, even taking picnics with them. Clearly this is unacceptable and this is why we have launched this awareness campaign to highlight the dangers.

“We are also urging parents to educate their children about the dangers of trespassing and to avoid swimming in any pools or lakes and to also be aware of where their children are and what they are doing this summer.”

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