Warning after people found swimming in Bishops Itchington quarry less than two weeks after teenager's death

Police and the fire service are asking those considering swimming in open water to 'think carefully' after people were found swimming near the Bishops Itchington quarry not long after the death of a 17-year-old.

Tuesday, 7th August 2018, 1:23 pm
Updated Friday, 31st August 2018, 5:22 pm
Newbold Quarry Park in Rugby - one of the many bodies of open water across the county. Photo: Warwickshire County Council.

Police responded to two reports of people swimming at a Bishops Itchington quarry at the weekend, just over a week after 17-year-old Luke Murphy's body was pulled from Blue Lagoon near the village on July 26.

After one of the reports, police discovered two people swimming in the quarry - one of them refused to stop even after he was warned of risks.

Warwickshire County Council’s portfolio holder for community safety, Cllr Andy Crump, urged parents to talk to young people about the dangers of swimming in open water- which include cold water shock, pollution, currents and debris under the water.

Chief inspector Neil Harrison from Warwickshire Police, said:“As summer temperatures soar, taking a cooling dip in water is an obvious temptation.

"Bodies of water may look appealing, or even safe in some cases, however strong currents, hazardous objects, and pollution mean they often hide much less obvious dangers.

“Even if you are a strong swimmer you are still susceptible to dangers such as cold water shock, which affects your ability to swim and can have severe effects on your body in as little as three minutes.

"The longer you are in the water, the greater your chance of hypothermia as your core body temperature drops to a dangerous level.

“The best way to stay safe is to avoid swimming in open water and ensure you only enter water where there is adequate supervision and rescue cover."

Fire and police officers will be visiting lakes and quarries that young people are known to frequent to warn them about the dangers they could face when swimming in open water.

Group commander and prevention lead for Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service, Tim Sargent said: "Our advice to anyone considering going into the water is just not to do it. However, we know that we know that people will still be tempted.

"So if you are out with friends and you do decide to swim, then don’t drink alcohol, as this will inhibit your ability and perception of risk and will leave you unable to deal with the cold water shock.

"Stay together and look out for each other. If something does happen, call 999 immediately; do not attempt a rescue yourself.”