Report shows rise in drowning in Australia last year
THE Royal Life Saving National Drowning Report 2016 has found 280 people drowned in Australian waterways in the 2015/16 financial year, an increase of 5% per cent increase on the previous 12 months, with males drowning at a far higher rate than females.
There were 96 drownings in New South Wales in 2015/16, which is a decrease of 6% on the 10-year average.
The most deaths occurred in people aged 25 to 34 (18%), with males accounting for 91% of incidents overall.
Almost of third of drownings occurred at beaches (31%), with 27% of people swimming and recreating prior to drowning.
The report shows males accounted for 83% of drownings deaths in 2015/16, This is the highest percentage of male drownings in 10 years.
Almost one fifth of deaths (19%) occurred in people aged 25 to 34, with 52 deaths recorded.
This year, beaches were the leading location for drowning, accounting for 23% of deaths, followed by rivers and creeks (21%) and ocean / harbour locations (19%).
Royal Life Saving notes the decrease in the number of people drowning at rivers, creeks, lakes and dams is encouraging.
Inland waterways continue to be a leading location for drowning, with more than a quarter of all drownings occurring at rivers, creeks, lakes and dams.
There were 75 deaths at inland waterways this year: 58 at rivers and creeks, and 17 at lakes and dams.
There was a 25% decrease in drowning at rivers, with the 58 a reduction on the 10-year average of 77.
There was a 30% decrease in the number of children aged 0-4 who drowned this year compared to the 10 year average of 21.