Safety on the Water
You should also read British Rowing's safety guidelines
Here are the Navigation Rules, which apply to our reach of the river
And here's a Map of our reach
Also guidelines for traversing locks
If you have an accident on the water where someone is injured or equipment is damaged, you MUST report it to British Rowing - see their Incident Reporting webpage.
Any incident involving a motor vessel MUST be reported to the Environment Agency, tel.0800 807060. Make sure you note the name of the vessel, and obtain witness statements if possible. If you spot a vessel behaving dangerously, report it to the nearest lock-keeper.
Shepperton Lock 01932 221840
Sunbury Lock 01932 782089
General enquiries 01709389201
All incidents, including near misses, capsizes, navigational errors etc. must be reported to our Safety Adviser, Nigel Base, either by email (safety [at] weyfarers.org.uk) or using the incident log book which is be located under the Safety Notice Board in the Hut.
Here are the Incident Reporting Guidelines
Rowing is a very safe sport. Serious incidents are so rare that they make front-page news, unlike many sports where broken bones and other injuries happen all the time. British Rowing publishes safety guidelines "Row Safe" which clubs must abide by, and each club has to carry out an annual Safety Audit including a Risk Assessment and Safety Plan.
In addition, every rower should carry out their own “Risk Assessment” before each outing. There are three things you need to check before you take a boat out:
Are you fit to row?
A health warning
Rowing is an endurance sport, which means that it places considerable demands on the body. You should NOT ROW if
The Thames at Weybridge is fairly clean these days, but any cuts or abrasions should be covered by waterproof plasters and you should never drink the river water or touch your eyes with wet hands. There is a small risk, particularly in summer, of the following:
If you feel ill after rowing, always consult your doctor.
Rowing is an outdoor sport (which should be obvious!). Make sure you dress appropriately for the weather. This means warm clothing in winter - several thin layers are more effective than one thick layer, since warm air is trapped between the layers. A woolly hat is advisable (looks are not important!) since the body loses a great deal of heat through the head. If your hands suffer with the cold you can try wearing cycling or weightlifting gloves, provided you can still control the oar(s). “Pogies” – mittens which cover the blade handle as well as your hands - are also available. In summer, beware of sunburn and heat stroke. Remember that sunlight reflects off the water and always wear sun cream or a long-sleeved top if you burn easily. A suitable hat is also advisable to keep the sun off the back of your neck. A lightweight, preferably breathable, waterproof top is essential year-round. Coxes MUST wear a lifejacket.
Make sure that you have something substantial to eat at least an hour before rowing – even healthy people can suffer from hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar) when doing strenuous exercise. Bring a snack with you to eat afterwards, preferably one containing complex carbohydrates, for example wholemeal bread, fresh or dried fruit, a cereal bar etc.
Take a water bottle with you in the boat. When exercising, especially in hot weather, you need to drink about half a litre every hour, preferably in small sips at regular intervals.
Look at the River
The Environment Agency, which administers the non-tidal reaches of the Thames, issues warnings when conditions are deemed to be dangerous to navigation. The severity of the warning (yellow or red) depends on the amount of water flowing through the sluices at each lock, and may vary on different reaches of the Thames.
A board on the door of the Ladies’ changing room at the Club will show the current state of the river:
You should also use common sense in deciding whether it is safe to row. DO NOT ROW if:
Check your equipment
The three checks specified in British Rowing's "Row Safe":
Additional checks which we recommend:
If you find anything wrong with the equipment, don’t just put it back on the rack. Enter the details in the equipment log and make sure that the Captain, a Vice Captain or your coach is aware of the problem.
Tell someone that you will be out there and write it in the log book. NEVER go out in a single scull on your own – always make sure there are other boats out or that someone on the bank is watching you.
HAVE A GOOD ROW!!
Safety on Rowing Tours
Make sure you read the British Rowing Safety Guidelines for Touring Rowing
Each boat should have:
essential for manoeuvring in locks