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22 March 2020 06:56

Boohoo.com Coast Karen Millen

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is urging anyone planning a visit to the region's coastlines to stay safe. Due to the Coronavirus outbreak's impact on several aspects of life - including the closure of cinemas, pubs, restaurants and gyms - the RNLI believes more people may now plan to visit the coast. It said that anyone visiting the coastline along the East should not take any unnecessary risks which could potentially put more pressure on emergency frontline services. Nick Ayers, RNLI regional water safety lead for the north east and east, said: "Our beaches and coastal areas may see an increase in visitors in the days and weeks to come, so we're urging everyone to follow our advice and stay safe. "Whether you're fishing, surfing, kayaking, sailing or just going for a walk, we're asking people to be extra responsible and to avoid taking unnecessary risks to themselves and others which could put unnecessary pressure on front line services." COASTAL visitors are being urged to take extra care in light of social distancing measures due to the coronavirus.

More people are expected to be visiting coastal areas and beaches this weekend to get fresh air and exercise while adhering to government guidance to avoid close contact with others. The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is urging people to follow essential water safety advice, as coastal areas can present their own dangers. Guy Addington, RNLI water safety lead for the south east and London, said: "Our beaches and coastal areas may see an increase in visitors in the days and weeks to come, so we're urging everyone to follow our advice and stay safe. "Whether you're fishing, surfing, kayaking, sailing or just going for a walk, we're asking people to be extra responsible and to avoid taking unnecessary risks to themselves and others which could put unnecessary pressure on front line services." The RNLI advice for walkers is to take care near cliffs and know the route, and to check tide times daily to avoid getting stuck on beaches. If going afloat, it is important to carry a means for calling for help and to wear a life jacket, and to check all equipment is in good working order and be aware of changing weather conditions.

Guy added: "During these unprecedented times, we have taken steps to close our lifeboat stations and shops to the public. "However RNLI lifeboats and stations remain fully operational and we will still launch to those in peril on the sea. "As with all public places we'd encourage people to follow guidelines provided by the government to maintain a two-metre distance, follow good hygiene practices and avoid mass gatherings." The Irish Coast Guard and RNLI have jointly issued advice for anyone travelling to the coast during the coronavirus outbreak to keep them others safe. As people are being urged to stay in as much as possible and practice social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic, a trip to the coast is becoming a highly attractive way for people to get some fresh air and stretch their legs. Gareth Morrison, RNLI Head of Water Safety, said "Our beaches and coastal areas may see an increase in visitors in the days and weeks to come, so we're urging everyone to follow our advice and stay safe." "As with all public places we'd encourage people to follow guidelines provided by the government to maintain a two-metre distance, follow good hygiene practices and avoid mass gatherings." "During these unprecedented times, we have taken steps to close our lifeboat stations and shops to the public.

"However RNLI lifeboats and stations remain fully operational and we will still launch to those in peril on the sea." Coastal areas can also present dangers of their own and the two organisations are asking people to ensure they follow essential water safety advice. Check tide times to avoid being cut off and weather conditions before setting out. The advice for people exercising on or near the water is as follows: Check tide times daily Gerard O'Flynn, Irish Coast Guard added: "Please refer to the HSE website for public health information, pay particular attention to guidelines on social distancing including when out and about and as always if you are on the coast or cliffs – Stay Back – Stay High – Stay Dry" Image copyright Jeremy Bolwell/Geograph Image caption The RNLI warned people seeking exercise in places like Barafundle Bay in Pembrokeshire to take care People seeking fresh air on the Welsh coast while coronavirus social-distancing measures apply have been warned against taking "unnecessary risks". The RNLI said beaches and coastal areas could see an increase in visitors this weekend and beyond as people seek exercise in open spaces. But the charity said the coast "can also present dangers".

It is asking people to ensure they follow essential water-safety advice. Chris Cousens, RNLI regional water safety lead, said: "Our beaches and coastal areas may see an increase in visitors in the days and weeks to come, so we're urging everyone to follow our advice and stay safe. "The weather might be improving but it's important to remember that the water is very cold this time of year." He added: "'As with all public places, we'd encourage people to follow guidelines provided by the government to maintain a two-metre (6.5ft) distance, follow good hygiene practices and avoid mass gatherings." He said lifeboat stations and shops were currently closed to the public, but lifeboats and stations remain fully operational. The RNLI told people to take note of signs at beaches advising of the local hazards, to check tide times to avoid being cut off and to check weather conditions before setting out as these can change quickly. It also urged people fishing, surfing, kayaking, sailing or just going for a walk to: