Independent review published into beach safety responsibilities

An independent review into beach safety carried out for the Maritime and Coastguard Agency has been published today. ​
The Review of the Legal Responsibilities for Beach Safety, carried out by the law firm DWF, was commissioned as a result of calls for more clarity around who is legally responsible for beach safety. 
It followed the inquest into the deaths of seven young men who drowned in separate incidents at Camber Sands in East Sussex in the summer of 2016. 
The Coroner said in his view, that there was a complex patchwork of legal responsibilities and asked for these to be reviewed to bring a great clarity. 
In the review, there are three central recommendations. The first, that the Maritime and Coastguard Agency should publish guidance for coastal landowners on managing beach safety, has already been carried out and published at Gov.uk 
There will now be a series of discussions between all interested parties. The National Water Safety Forum, which leads on drowning prevention and has worked to drive down the number of deaths, will be consulting with its members on the best way forward. This will consider the recommendations such as the viability of legislation, and funding options for beach lifeguarding. 
Director of HM Coastguard Claire Hughes said: “Our hearts go out to all those who have lost loved ones at the coast. We continue to work with all our partners to keep people safe at the beach and rescue those in need.  
“Although this is a complex and sometimes sensitive issue, we must and will do all we can both as HM Coastguard and with others, to make sure people who go to the coast can return home safely.  
The full report can be found here
The guidance for coastal landowners published by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency can be found here



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