Don’t Drink and Drown

Don’t Drink and Drown is a national campaign by the Royal Life Saving Society UK that warns drinkers to steer clear of walking by or entering water when under the influence of alcohol. A national campaign week will run from 3 to 9 December 2018.

Research indicates that around a quarter of all adult drowning victims have alcohol in their bloodstream.

The campaign was launched following a string of tragic student drownings. It has two targeted time frames through the year where RLSS UK and partners push messaging these are September and December.


  • Don’t enter the water if you have been drinking
  • Alcohol seriously affects your ability to get yourself out of trouble
  • Look out for your friends, make sure they get home safely
  • Don’t walk home near water, you might fall in

Effects of alcohol on the body

  • Alcohol lowers inhibitions, leading to impaired judgment which means you are more likely to take risks and get into trouble
  • Alcohol limits muscle ability making simple movements much harder
  • Alcohol slows down your reactions making it more difficult to get yourself out of trouble
  • Alcohol numbs the senses particularly sight, sound and touch, making swimming very difficult

The Evidence

There were 366 accidental drownings involving alcohol and/or drugs in the United Kingdom from 2012-2016, that’s an average of 73 per year.

Visit the RLSS UK website for more information and campaign materials.