A TOTAL of 16 people have drowned in Malaga province so far this year, according to a report by the Royal Spanish Federation of Rescue and Lifesaving (RFESS).
Half of these deaths occurred on unmanned beaches, while another four bodies were found in ports and the rest were discovered in rivers and swimming pools.
These figures make the province the second highest for recorded drowning in Andalusia, only beaten by Cadiz who have had 20 deaths. It is also the eleventh highest in Spain. The figure is fast approaching last year’s tally of 17 deaths, with three months of the year still to go.
According to RFESS spokesperson, Carlos Porro, all these deaths occurred in areas without supervision so one of the biggest causes was recklessness on the part of individuals.
This irresponsibility has been largely debated in towns across the province, with many considering imposing penalties on those who commit dangerous acts that endanger their lives or those who rescue them.
The towns of Estepona and Benalmadena already have fines in place to punish those who ignore warnings against bathing in dangerous areas.
Teresa Porras, the Councillor for Operational Services, Beaches and Festivities in Malaga, has reserves about putting these punishments in measure as the implementation would be “complicated” and would require increasing the presence of local police at beaches, which would be a costly endeavour.
Porras went on tostate that it is more effective to run awareness campaigns to prevent these incidences in the first place.