• Sweden's news in English
 

Swedish drownings reach 15-year high

Published: 10 Jul 2014 12:59 GMT+02:00

A total of 21 people drowned in Sweden in June 2014. By contrast, 14 people were killed out on the water in June 2013. The increase marks the highest rate for 15 years.

Of the victims; 19 of them were men, one was a three-year-old boy, and only one was a woman. Indeed, 85 percent of all drowning victims in 2013 were male.

"One of the main problems is that a lot of men think they are made of steel and won't get into trouble in the water. Nine out of ten victims are male, which is a very high figure," Anders Wernesten of the Swedish Life Saving Association (Svenska livräddningssällskapet) told The Local.

Wernesten added that many of the victims were older than 50 and were inclined to go swimming far out into the sea.

"What tends to happen is that they get cold and tired. It can also be the case that they have another type of illness which is made worse by being in the water for a long period of time," he said.

Many of the deaths last month were linked to fishing trips. Two men, aged in the 30s and 60s, were found dead in June after going out fishing Lake Hjälmaren in central Sweden.

The following day a 45-year-old man drowned when the canoe he was piloting with his five-year-old son capsized. His son, who was wearing a life jacket, managed to raise the alarm, but his father perished.

A total of ten of the 21 deaths were associated with fishing excursions. Many of the victims were aged over 50, with three of the deceased men being over the age of 80.

However, there were some young victims including a 20-year-old man who drowned during graduation celebrations. The sole woman who died was 29, after she got swept out to sea while swimming.

In almost all cases the wearing of a life jacket could have made significant difference, Wernesten said.

"Wearing a life jacket can be the difference between life and death. In the summer when the weather is warm, like it is this year, the number of deaths increase so people need to be extra careful," said Wernesten.

In 2014 there have already been 50 drowning-related deaths, which is a similar figure to the same time last year. In 2013 a total of 129 died in the water. By contrast, the cooler summer of 2010 claimed 79 lives on the water.

Alcohol is often a factor, Wernesten said.

"It is not unusual to find traces of alcohol in the bloodstream among victims. Put simply, people should not drink and swim and they should be more willing to wear a life jacket," he added.

In a recent survey ordered by insurance agency Försäkringsbolaget IF, 28 percent of Swedes confessed they had not swum 200 metres during the past ten years. In Sweden swimming 200 metres is used as a standard for testing swimming ability, and considered the shortest length one should be able to swim.

The Local/pr 

For more stories about Sweden, join us on Facebook and Twitter

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Sweden set for brief burst of spring sunshine
Photo: TT

Sweden set for brief burst of spring sunshine

April is a notoriously whimsical weather month and is set to take a turn for the better in Sweden as spring sunshine is set to make a return to many parts of the country . READ  

Swedish teens in hurry to leave home
A housing queue protest in Stockholm in April 2015. Photo: TT

Swedish teens in hurry to leave home

Swedish youngsters leave home earlier their European counterparts, surprising housing researchers. READ  

Swedish study explains coffee cancer link
Cutting cancer, one cup at a time. Photo: TT

Swedish study explains coffee cancer link

Swedish researchers have explained why drinking coffee is thought to lower the risk of contracting breast and other cancers. READ  

Zlatan's French rant ban reduced to three matches
Sweden's star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Zlatan's French rant ban reduced to three matches

Controversial Swedish footballer Zlatan Ibrahimovic's ban for his foul-mouthed rant at a referee in which he blasted France as a “shit country” has been reduced from four matches to three, French newspaper Le Parisien reported on Friday. READ  

Syria: ‘most dangerous’ Isis leaders Scandinavian
President Assad. Photo: TT

Syria: ‘most dangerous’ Isis leaders Scandinavian

President Bashar al-Assad has thanked Sweden for taking in record numbers of refugees during the war, but warned about a growing danger from ‘Scandinavian’ Islamist extremists in his country. READ  

New Swedes picked for airport Hall of Fame
Fashion blogger Kenza Zouiten is one of the new faces. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

New Swedes picked for airport Hall of Fame

The new faces that are going to represent Sweden at the Stockholm Hall of Fame at Arlanda airport have been revealed. The gallery of famous Swedes is meant to reflect the country's contemporary icons, but this is its first update in almost nine years. READ  

Swedish Robocop star in Wikileaks email scandal
Joel Kinnaman, left, and his co-star Abblie Cornish in Robocop. Photo: AP Photo/Sony/Columbia Pictures/Kerry Hayes

Swedish Robocop star in Wikileaks email scandal

Sweden's hottest Hollywood star Joel Kinnaman is the latest name to emerge from a Wikileaks' publication of over 170,000 internal Sony Pictures emails stolen in a massive hacker attack last year, alongside one of the Pirate Bay founders and information about the fourth book in the famous Swedish Millennium series. READ  

Feminist leader to take sick leave for exhaustion
Sissela Nordling Blanco at Stockholm's City Hall. Photo: Magnus Hjalmarson Neideman/SvD/TT

Feminist leader to take sick leave for exhaustion

One of the leaders of the feminist party which came close to entering parliament in last year's Swedish election is set to take a break from politics following exhaustion symptoms, a spokesperson announced on Friday. But party figurehead Gudrun Schyman has told The Local that she will stay on. READ  

First 'city warehouse' in Scandinavia for Ikea
What the new store will look like. Photo: Ikea

First 'city warehouse' in Scandinavia for Ikea

Swedish furniture giant has announced plans to open its first 'city warehouse' in Scandinavia, with a massive new store set to be built in the centre of Copenhagen, as plans for a similar project in Stockholm remain in doubt. READ  

New defence deal agreed between Swedish parties
Swedish soldiers on a mission in Afghanistan. Photo: TT

New defence deal agreed between Swedish parties

UPDATED: Sweden's centre-left coalition government has agreed a new 10.2 billion kronor ($111.9 million) defence deal with three of the four parties that make up the opposition Alliance after days of debate. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Features
What you can buy in Sweden for the price of a London shed
Stockholm School of Economics
Sponsored Article
"You may only do something once, but do it 100%"
National
What's on in Sweden this week
Swedish Hasbeens
Sponsored Article
Is the world wrong to connect Sweden with sexiness?
National
Swedes launch first donut into space
Blog updates

17 April

Editor’s blog, April 17th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, After several days of social media buzz about an upcoming announcement from Abba’s Björn Ulvaeus,..." READ »

 

15 April

Gång, timme, tid & dags (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! In this article I will talk about “gång”, “timmar”, “dags” and “tid”, because they all translate..." READ »

 
 
 
Politics
Is Sweden returning to 1990s social democratic welfare politics?
National
Mamma Mia! Abba entertainment venue set to open in Stockholm
Gallery
People-watching: April 15th
National
Why Sweden is top place in the world for expats to raise children
National
Swedish 'submarine' was civilian boat
Sponsored Article
Want to study in Sweden? Read why Stockholm is the best choice
National
Why has a US town got pulled into a Swedish spelling row?
Gallery
Property of the week: Hovås, Gothenburg
National
What does Zlatan think of his ban?
Sponsored Article
Does far-north Sweden have to punch above its weight?
National
Swedish teenagers help rebuild Breivik massacre island
National
Would you live in a steel box?
National
How an act of kindness by one Syrian immigrant went viral
Gallery
People-watching: April 8th
National
Swedish bids for Billboard fame
National
Swedish monkeys denied Saudi visas
National
Sunny spring weather predicted
Sponsored Article
'Impossible' to run Skanska without Bromma Airport
National
Half of Swedes want begging ban
Gallery
Property of the week: Gotland
National
Why are expats less likely to settle down with Swedes?
Sport
What does Sweden think of Zlatan's recent outburst?
Society
Get to grips with Sweden's most bizarre Easter traditions
Gallery
People-watching: April 1st
National
The Local's best April Fools' gags
National
US spy agency to feature in new 'Stieg Larsson' book sequel
National
Beaver bite at Swedish bus stop
Gallery
Property of the week: Åreda
National
How this Syrian travelled to Sweden
Was Swedish TV host too harsh on nationalist leader Åkesson?
Sponsored Article
'Sweden must embrace openness and diversity'
Scandinavian airlines change cockpit rules after Germanwings crash
National
Sweden remembers Nobel laureate Tomas Tranströmer
Politics
Why petrol prices are going up
Gallery
People-watching: March 28th
Stieg Larsson's partner blasts Millennium trilogy sequel
Society
How to never miss your favourite weekly features on The Local
Gallery
People-watching: March 25th
National
Which words are changing in Sweden's latest dictionary?
National
Is this house 'un-Swedish'?
National
Sweden pays tribute to victims of Germanwings Alps crash
National
Neo-Nazi activity rising in Sweden
National
How to make Swedish Waffles
Gallery
Property of the week: Torslanda - Hjuvik
Sponsored Article
Ten tips for succeeding as a start-up in Sweden
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

3,342
jobs available
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
psdmedia.se