A teenager from Leeds plays a starring role in a hard-hitting new film aimed at highlighting the potentially tragic consequences of swimming in reservoirs.
Fifteen-year-old Crawshaw Academy student Daniel Reed, of Pudsey, features in the video by West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, which charts a futile attempt to rescue a swimmer in difficulty.
In the last five years firefighters were called to 37 water rescues in Leeds, five of which resulted in deaths. Across West Yorkshire, there were nine fatalities during the same period.
Alastair Harvey, recreation advisor at Yorkshire Water, said: “Reservoirs may look tempting to take a swim in but they can be killers and our dramatic film will hopefully raise awareness of these risks amongst young people.
“Cold water shock can lead to hyperventilation, increased blood pressure, breathing difficulties and heart attacks plus water temperatures remain just as cold in summer as in winter.
“We have 115 scenic and beautiful reservoirs that we want walkers, cyclists, runners, picnic-goers and others to enjoy this summer. We just don’t want anyone to swim in them and to obey our warning signs.”
The video – filmed at Ogden reservoir in Halifax and aimed mainly at young people – comes just three days after three youths had to be rescued after becoming stranded in a culvert on the River Aire in Leeds. Station manager Ian Thompson, a technical rescue officer, said: “This recent rescue from a culvert on the River Aire in Leeds shows just how easy it is to get into trouble around all different types of waterways across West Yorkshire, not just reservoirs. As we start the school summer holidays this rescue shows how crucial it is for youngsters to think twice about the dangers of open water.”