RNLI responds to question of return to water based activities in Donegal

Government allow return to some sporting activities from Monday under strict conditions

Kayak

Some watersports will be allowed as lockdown restrictions ease

Since lockdown began, the RNLI and IrishCoast Guard have asked people not to take part in water based activities as part of their physical exercise. 

Easing of restrictions due to begin on Monday,May 18 includes a return to sporting activities under strict guidelines and where physical distancing and hygiene can be maintained. Many people have been asking if this means that it is now permissible to return to the water. 

The good news is that people can go back on the water, subject to the activity meeting guidelines. 

A spokesperson for the RNLI told Donegal Live: “The Government has now published a roadmap which details the easing of restrictions over the weeks and months ahead and which will see people begin to resume their day to day activities while observing the necessary public health measures to protect them from the spread of Coronavirus. 

“We would ask that people adhere to the public health advice contained in that roadmap when they resume any water-based activity and help minimise the risk to Search and Rescue and frontline emergency services from being unintentionally exposed to coronavirus.”

Relevant guidelines for taking part in sport during the first phase of lockdown restrictions as per the document ‘Roadmap for Reopening Society and Business’  are: “Permit people to engage in outdoor sporting and fitness activities, either individually or in very small groups (maximum four people), where social distancing can be maintained and where there is no contact.”

The RNLI’s safety advice should also be adhered to at all times. It is more important than ever now due to the risk of spreading Covid-19 in the event of a rescue situation. 

The RNLI spokesperson said: “To ensure peoples’ own safety in or on the water please adhere to the relevant water safety guidance for your activity.”

Everyone planning on using the water is asked to read the information at www.rnli.org/safety

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