The possibility of a swimmer being struck by a vessel, its propeller or being run over is ever present while powered craft are manoeuvring at such locations.
Swimming is therefore prohibited at these locations.
Waterways Ireland also advises all participants engaged in open water swimming training of the inherent dangers attached to this activity in locations where there is boating traffic.
A swimmer in the water wearing high visibility head gear will always remain a very small target to see to the master of a powered craft particularly if:
- the water surface is choppy
- there is strong glare reflected from the water surface
- there is difficulty in sighting due to slanting sunshine in early morning or late evening
- visibility is poor due to fog, mist or rain
Swimmers should risk assess their swimming location prior to entering the water, for boat traffic, entry and exit locations, availability of life saving appliances, weather and water conditions.
The presence of a safety boat or kayak will always give enhanced safety and security.
Earlier this week, two men lost their lives in separate incidents while swimming in Lough Derg on the Shannon Navigation, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.