It’s going to be a warm start to June across western Washington. With temperatures inching toward 90 degrees this weekend, King County officials, including Marta the River Otter, urge everyone to be careful when heading out for fun on the water.
Marta, King County’s newest water safety advocate, had a big day to remind people about water safety. The King County Sheriff’s Office Marine Rescue and Dive Unit, and Public Health – Seattle & King County’s Violence and Injury Prevention team joined Marta to remind us that warm air temperatures don’t translate to warm water temperatures.
Marta met Hana Kim, news reporter with Q13 FOX. They both look so good in their lifejackets.
Lakes, rivers and Puget Sound are all quite cold this time of year, and swimmers can suffer from cold-water shock after just a few minutes in the water.
King County officials are on high alert because 17 people died in preventable drownings in the county in 2015.
Marta knows rivers because they are her natural habitat. She also knows how dangerous they can be.
Sometimes the best decision is to not go in the water at all. And it’s not just because of cold water temperatures – rivers shift and change every year. What was a safe place to swim last year might not be safe today.
Those concerns are partly why King County this year is reaching out to first- and second-grade students with a special river safety presentation featuring Marta.
For details about river safety, visit www.kingcounty.gov/riversafety. For more information on water safety and drowning prevention, visit the King County Water Safety website, www.kingcounty.gov/healthservices/health/injury/water.