FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project
Dave Benjamin, Executive Director, 708-903-0166, firstname.lastname@example.org
Bob Pratt, Executive Director of Education, 517-643-2553, email@example.com
Great Lakes Water Safety Consortium
Jamie Racklyeft, Executive Director, 734-358-8982, firstname.lastname@example.org
Great Lakes Drownings reach 600 since 2010
A unified consortium of experts and advocates are in action to stop the drownings
GREAT LAKES, USA – The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project (GLSRP) announces its current drowning statistics. In 2017, the GLSRP is tracking 63 Great Lakes drownings. Overall since 2010, the GLSRP has tracked 600 Great Lakes drownings. On average almost half of all Great Lakes drownings happen in Lake Michigan. The full statistics are here.
“One heart breaking story after another of easily avoidable drowning accidents,” said Dave Benjamin, GLSRP Executive Director. “A four-year-old child slipped underwater unnoticed; A father and daughter struggling in waves and dangerous currents; A man falling off a boat while spreading his father’s ashes in the lake; A teen swimming to a break wall struggles in water over his head.”
“Knowing how to swim is not enough. Knowing how to survive, understanding the body of water, and some type of flotation device are key.”
“Of the 600 Great Lakes drownings since 2010, only five of them were wearing lifejackets,” said Bob Pratt, GLSRP Executive Director. “If you do the math, you have less than a one percent chance of drowning in the Great Lakes if you are wearing a personal flotation device.”
The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project tracks the drownings, teaches Great Lakes Water Safety, works with family and friends of drowning victims to advocate water safety, and provides open water surf lifeguard training and first responder water rescue and water resuscitation in-service training.
“This sad milestone only drives us more in our mission to end drowning in the Great Lakes,” said Jamie Racklyeft, Great Lakes Water Safety Consortium Executive Director. “Most people say they simply didn’t know that there is so much more to water safety than knowing how to swim.”
“Everyone needs to learn and understand how to avoid, escape, and safely save others from dangerous waves, currents, and conditions.”
The Great Lakes Water Safety Consortium brings together first responders, community leaders, park rangers, research scientists, lifeguards, meteorologists, survivors, loved ones, and other water safety advocates. Its mission is to connect all groups and individuals interested in water safety to maximize its collective knowledge, resources, and actions to end drowning in the Great Lakes.
The Consortium now offers inexpensive universal beach warning signage for all Great Lakes shoreline beaches, including warnings for where classic rip currents, structural currents, outlet currents, and channel currents tend to appear. Visit www.GreatLakesWaterSafety.org for more information and to order new signs and brochures for your area.
ABOUT THE GLSRP
The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project, Inc. (GLSRP) is a nonprofit 501c3 corporation that is about saving lives.
- Tracks the Great Lakes drowning statistics (600+ drownings since 2010)
- Performs “Great Lakes Water Safety” presentations and trainings (Over 472 in 7 of the 8 Great Lakes states since 2011)
- Works with family and friends of Great Lakes drowning victims to advocate water safety.
- Hosts Open Water Surf Lifeguard Training and First Responder In-service Training
Mission: To eradicate drownings by being the leader of Great Lakes water safety by providing training, public preparedness, and public awareness.
Vision: Everyone in the Great Lakes region, nationwide and worldwide, is knowledgeable, engaged and proactive in water safety with an emphasis on the Great Lakes region.
- WGN Chicago’s Very Own segment, “Man makes water safety education his life’s passion”
- Dave Benjamin’s drowning accident and ‘Because I said I would’ water safety promise video
- John & Kathy Kocher’s “Gentle Giant” ‘Because I said I would promise video.
ABOUT THE GLWSC
The Great Lakes Water Safety Consortium (GLWSC) is a community of best practice, bringing together first responders, community leaders, park rangers, research scientists, lifeguards, meteorologists, survivors, loved ones, and other water safety advocates. Its mission is to connect all groups and individuals interested in water safety to maximize its collective knowledge, resources, and actions to end drowning in the Great Lakes.