- West Country (E)
- 2 updates
The RNLI has begun a "Respect the Water" campaign in the West Country. 32 lives were lost on the south west coast last year and it wants beach-goers and surfers to take more care.
The number of people who died along Britain's coast in 2013 was the highest in four years, the RNLI said as it launches a campaign calling on people to Respect the Water.
Figures show that 167 people died in water-related accidents and a further 368 were rescued by lifeguard crews after getting into difficulties.
Cold water shock, rip currents and fatigue were common factors in contributing to accidents at the coast while alcohol played a part in 28 deaths last year.
As the temperature continues to soar RNLI coastal safety manager Ross Macleod called for people to stay safe around the water.
"We really feel that that number is too high and we need to do something about it," he said.
The campaign will be launched in Brighton today by England rugby player James Haskell who said: "This is about being smart and safe when you are there."