HOLIDAYMAKERS have been warned that they are playing with their lives in heavy waves along Scarborough’s seafront.
Both the police and the coastguard yesterday spoke out against wave dodgers on Royal Albert Drive, alongside the railings in North Bay.
Their warnings come on the sixth anniversary of the inquest on a family of three – swept to their deaths after a freak wave dragged them out to sea.
Kim Barrett, 33, and her two children, Luke and Aimee Greenwood, 11 and 13, drowned after being pulled into the sea from the slipway at North Bay. This week in 2005, coroner Michael Oakley said: “It is clear the deaths of these two children and their mother was an accident and demonstrates the power of the sea cannot at any time be ignored.”
There could have been another tragedy during Tuesday’s high tide, as a family were witnessed making their daughter, about six years old, pose in front of the railings on Royal Albert Drive as waves came crashing behind her.
The warnings have been issued after high tides on Tuesday brought wave dodgers out in force, with dozens scattered along the seafront trying to brave the 20ft high waves, in defiance of warnings from patrolling police officers and the coastguard.
Mark Appleby, Scarborough coastguard manager, said: “People need to remember that by doing this, they are not just risking their life, they are endangering the lives of those who have to try and rescue them.
“It might be a spectacular site, but people are putting themselves in real danger looking at it.”
Mr Appelby has also stated that it isn’t just the water that could prove dangerous to wave dodgers. Debris floating on the sea’s surface can be flung at tremendous speeds if caught in a wave, and can lead to serious injury.
He said: “The sea is very dangerous and unpredictable, so my main advice to people is just to be cautious when near the seafront.”
A police spokesman for North Yorkshire Police added: “This is a reckless act that not only puts yourself in danger but also risks the lives of those who inevitably come to your saviour.”