Calls for caution have once again been made to swimmers and bathers as the use of pools and beaches dramatically increases during the summer months. As tourists continue to flock into the area the authorities once again warn of the dangers, particularly to non or to weak swimmers, as well as to parents of young children, who might be especially at risk at this time.
In the province of Alicante alone twelve people have lost their lives by drowning in the sea, in reservoirs and in private pools during the period March to July, a figure that is likely to rise during the coming weeks. Indeed, according to data provided by Cicu and the Department of Health, there have been 53 deaths from drowning in the last two years.
The President of the State Association of Accident Victims, DIA, Canes Francisco, said recently that the figures are a "true outrage because most of the cases are avoidable, with the majority due to carelessness of the people involved."
But in reality, in the absence of accurate statistics on deaths by drowning, the figures may be even greater, said a spokesman from the Red Cross, who emphasized the need to account in detail for the number of deaths and the circumstances of each death, in order to identify the specific reasons so that measures can be taken to avoid such accidents in the future.
Some experts point to the possibility that the reduction in life guard hours and days of surveillance on the beaches may have influenced the number of deaths, although bathers own recklessness is undoubtedly the primary cause.
The list of tragedy’s began on March 30 when a 50 year old man drowned on the Urbanova beach. Apparently, the victim went for an early morning swim from which he failed to return. His family went down to search the beach. Realizing what had happened, they immediately alerted the emergency services, but, unfortunately, the man was dead when he was eventually pulled out of the sea.
A day later, a 3 year old boy died from drowning after falling into a pool in a private house in Javea. The accident occurred on the Cansalades urbanization, where the child and his mother were enjoying a short holiday. When she realized he was missing the mother found the child floating in the pool. Although she pulled him out, SAMU were unable to revive him.
On June 17, a man drowned on La Zenia beach. The incident occurred at about 17:30 pm when the man’s body, a foreign retiree, was found floating in the sea. The sea claimed another oriolano three days later. The death occurred on La Glea beach during the mid afternoon. Bathers tried to rescue the man, who decided to go swimming despite a heavy swell. The deceased, aged 44, was pulled onto the sand, but the emergency services could only pronounce him dead.
On June 23, a 60-year-old man from Cuenca died in Dénia during the early evening. He was walking along the edge of the sea on la Costa de la Calma. It seems that he drowned after suffering a stroke.
El pantano de Beniarrés claimed the life of a man on June 29 when he fell into the sea whilst fishing. The accident occurred at about 15:30 pm when, for unknown reasons, the man fell into the water. A rescue helicopter was mobilized along with members of the Civil Guard and Fire Services but the man was pronounced dead at the scene.
On 10 July a 16-year-old Romanian girl died in the pool of a private villa in the rural area of Llobella in Benissa. The emergency call was made at around 1400 hours, after family and friends found her body in the pool. SAMU tried to resuscitate the girl but she eventually died.
Sunday 13 July was an especially tragic day. In the morning, las lagunas de Rabasa became a deathtrap for a 18 year old boy who had been camping with friends from Alicante. Divers found his body after three hours of searching. It seems that the boy was trying to swim across a large lagoon when he died.
The day claimed it’s second victim in Beniarrés, a 49 year old Norwegian national and then on that same day a British scuba diver died while diving in the vicinity of Tabarca. The deceased was a specialist and was able to dive to a depth of 80 meters. The death occurred on a World War II wreck..
The final two deaths were reported last Thursday, when a swimmer aged 42 died in Albufereta and a 78 year old man drowned in la Playa Centro de La Villajoyosa.
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