THE story of an 18-year-old boy who drowned while swimming with his friends in Glendale last week made chilling reading.
Similar tragedies have been happening this rainy season with many lives being lost in sad but, otherwise, avoidable situations.
Heavy rains have been experienced in most parts of the country for the past two weeks and police have been urging people not to cross flooded rivers.
Sadly, these warnings from the police, and from the Met Department, are falling on deaf ears and people continue to die.
What is sad about these deaths is that they are avoidable.
People do not have to cross flooded rivers given the obvious dangers it poses.
People cannot continue to die when we know it’s something that can be avoided.
Seeking services of self-styled experts, who ask for payments to help those who want to cross flooded rivers, is not a good idea as well.
Many people have died despite the assistance from such people.
The Meteorological Services Department constantly issues flood warnings after forecasting wet spells.
We should all start taking these warnings seriously and start exercising caution when we see that a river is flooded.
There is nothing so urgent that one should risk their lives by crossing a flooded river.
At the end of the day, it is really people’s impatience, and carelessness, which is leading to the many deaths in rivers, dams and other water bodies, during the rainy season.
After a wet spell, like the one experienced recently, people must avoid crossing flooded rivers.
Asking for assistance, or having any doubt about crossing a river, simply means one must not attempt to cross.
May this be a lesson to everyone reading this.
Even when one is in a situation, where a storm has occurred and left them marooned, rushing to swim or walk through a flooded area to reach safety, is usually a bad idea.
Remain calm, especially if you have younger children or elderly people with you. Understand that an evacuation order for everyone’s safety will be planned and figure out a plan about where you are going to go.
The best place to go is to a friend’s or relative’s home, away from the flooded area, or on elevated ground.
Authorities usually set up evacuation shelters in schools or churches across the area.
We do not need to keep losing lives to a season that is there to help us as human beings.
Rains are there to provide us with water and must never be a reason for these tragedies that we keep experiencing.