Children warned not to dig holes on beaches during summer holidays

Officials warn public over risk of sand hole collapses

Updated: 
Children warned not to dig holes on beaches during summer holidays

Children are being warned not to dig holes at the beach ahead of the school summer holidays.

Tourists flocking to Britain's beaches are being urged by emergency services to avoid digging holes - as they can potentially swallow up and suffocate a person.

See also: Girl, 9, dies after sand hole collapses on her

See also: Boy dies after suffocating in beach hole in New Zealand


Coastguards even staged a training exercise this week to practice rescuing someone from a sand hole on Somerset beach.

The Weston-Super-Mare Coastguard team uploaded pictures of the collapse training onto their Facebook page.



The caption read: "Tonight we conducted a large multi-agency exercise on Weston-Super-Mare beach. The exercise saw a number of agencies being introduced to Sand Hole Collapse by HM Coastguard.

"Area Officers buried a rescue dummy in soft sand on the beach.

"Weston-Super-Mare Coastguard Rescue Team and Burnham Coastguard Rescue Team got together with Avon Fire & Rescue, Council Beach Rangers, Avon & Somerset Police PCSOs, SWASFT HART Paramedics and an Ambulance Officer to learn the method of rescue for a casualty entrapped in the sand following a Sand Hole Collapse.

"If you see someone in difficulty on the coast, dial 999 and ask for the COASTGUARD! Maritime and Coastguard Agency."

Children warned not to dig holes on beaches during summer holidays

According to the Plymouth Herald, Jon Kendray, senior coastal operations office with the Coastguard in Weston-super-Mare, said: "Digging holes in the sand is something which can be seen by many as a relatively harmless exercise.

"But it can have very serious consequences. We would advise people not to tunnel or dig under the sand and only dig shallow holes.

"Children should be supervised by an adult at all times. Any shallow holes should be filled in afterwards.

"Digging holes into the sand can cause a sand hole collapse where a person can fall in and find themselves trapped."

The weight of the sand can restrict a person's airways, causing a serious risk to life.

According to the Bristol Post, Mr Kendray added: "The training exercise was held ahead of the start of the summer holidays when there are a lot more people visiting the beach.

"We wanted to make sure our teams were ready to deal with any incident that could occur."


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