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River safety for children

Port of London Authority Launch New Book in Thurrock

A new safety book, aimed at children in primary schools, is being launched by the Port of London Authority (PLA) at Corringham Primary School in Thurrock on 28th November. Representatives from the PLA, sponsors BP and Shell UK, and the Mayor of Thurrock, will be present to promote the Riverside Code Book.

Developed with support from BP and Shell UK, this engaging and colourful reading book will be offered free to primary schools in the London area, located along the Thames tideway. Designed to encourage children to learn and interact, the book is big, bright and colourful and carries distinct messages about the dangers of playing near rivers.

Gary Davies, safety officer for the PLA comments: "There are more than 20 reported drownings in the Thames each year. These deaths reflect the fact that although the Thames often appears to be a broad, slow river, it is in fact fast, cold and unpredictable.

"We believe it is extremely important to start safety education early. The Thames and its foreshores are attractive places for children to want to play, but they should be aware of the dangers too. We expect that this book will take our safety message to children in a fun and memorable way. We want to prevent accidents and fatalities in and around the river."

The Riverside Code has been illustrated by cartoonist, Don Seed. The code also offers advice on what to do in an emergency, and educates children about the dangers of vandalising life saving equipment and safety signs, and encourages children to report vandalism.

Notes to editors

The book launch will start at 11.50 am at Corringham Primary School. There will be opportunity to interview and photograph local primary school children with their new books. Alternatively, please contact Sarah-Jayne Douglas at Manning Selvage and Lee at firstname.lastname@mslpr.co.uk, or on 0207 878 3000 for photography or further information.

Thurrock is a particularly pertinent region for the Riverside Code campaign because its coastline spans 35km, and it is a particularly busy stretch of the river. Thurrock Wharves handle over 37 million tonnes of cargo a year.

For further information please contact PLA Press Office.

Geoff Adam +44(0) 20 7743 7000