The end of another year is rapidly approaching, and it has been hot and uncomfortable in Albury lately.
That’s summer in Australia, and it’s a season in which we traditionally celebrate the festive season in tune with the weather: backyard barbeques, picnics, outdoor community events, and spending time in and around water.
And we have plenty of water to choose from, from our magnificent Murray River to Lake Hume, to our supervised aquatic facilities.
While I encourage everyone to get out and enjoy these features of our region, I also want to remind you to do so safely.
Our Inland Water Safety campaign has some sobering messaging around the need to be vigilant around our rivers, creeks, dams, and lakes.
“These environments present a higher risk of drowning due to a variety of factors including changeable conditions, remoteness, lack of supervision and alcohol. Sadly, the Murray River is the number one river drowning blackspot in Australia with over 70 unintentional fatal drownings since 2002.”
The last thing any of us want is to deal with the tragic drowning of a loved one.
So please, take a few moments to read the information on our water safety webpage. It lists commonsense steps such as Know your limits and avoid taking risks and Check the conditions before heading out – steps that may just save your life or that of a loved one.
We all recognise that supervised swimming pools are inherently safer environments for cooling off, and I encourage everyone to use our supervised aquatic facilities.
AlburyCity has two public outdoor swimming pools: Albury Swim Centre and Lavington Swim Centre. There are two public swimming pools in nearby Wodonga, one of which is an indoor pool open year-round. Additionally, there are 4 private learn-to-swim schools in the Albury-Wodonga area.
AlburyCity is pleased to offer free Family Access Passes to our public pools to those members of our community who are deemed at higher risk of drowning. Passes are being distributed through the Red Cross and the Volunteer Resource Bureau.
In closing, I wish the entire Albury community a happy and safe Christmas. I hope you enjoy a much-deserved break and return refreshed for 2024!