PRIOR to the summer season getting underway, the Emergency department is urging bathers to “use their common sense” to help bring down the growing number of serious accidents in Balearic coastal waters.

A spokesman for the department said yesterday that figures rise every year and that in 2008 there were no less than 466 serious bathing accidents - 340 on Majorca, 65 on Ibiza and Formentera and 61 on Minorca.

These numbers include 14 deaths by drowning and 42 who were rescued out of their depths.
He added that much could be done to reduce the danger if swimmers took some basic precautions. Drowning, heat stroke, fainting, and jelly fish stings are some of the most frequent accidents, many of which could be avoided if people used more common sense about use of the beach and the coastal waters.