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Four-year progress report published by the Tidal Thames Water Safety Forum

The Tidal Thames Water Safety Forum (TTWSF) is a partnership of key stakeholders committed to reducing the number of people who, accidentally or deliberately, drown in the tidal Thames. The four-year progress report highlights the progress that has been made on delivering the Drowning Prevention Strategy which launched in 2019.

Since the launch, the forum’s founding members – Royal National Lifeboat Institution, London Fire Brigade, HM Coastguard, Metropolitan Police Marine Unit, London Ambulance Service and the Port of London Authority (PLA) – have been joined by City of London Corporation, Transport for London and the City of London Police. All partners are committed to playing their part in delivering a safer Thames.

Chair of the TTWSF, PLA employee Jenny Cooper-Low commented,

“This progress report reflects the work of the partners to tackle the complex challenges we face on the Thames. We remain committed to preventing people entering the water, to providing a swift response and rescue, and to working in partnership on planning, campaigns, education, and outreach.

“On behalf of the forum, thank you to the organisations who have adopted our recommendations, and to the Thames Skills Academy and the Ascension Trust, who are helping deliver the drowning prevention strategy.”

The report demonstrates how the partners have come together to deliver on the six key objectives, with the over-arching ambition of making the tidal Thames safer. These include the development and implementation of a programme to reduce the number of river-related suicide and self-harm drownings. As part of this objective, Bridge Watch has been established, which aims to provide a physical presence of teams of trained volunteers, who patrol the bridges of London and engage with anybody that indicates intent to enter the water, or who might not be behaving safely.

Volunteers are urgently needed. To find out more, visit: https://www.ascensiontrust.org.uk/bridge-watch/

The report can be accessed at this link: https://www.pla.co.uk/assets/ttwsfprogressreport.pdf