• 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
Mamma Mia! Abba reunite as silicon dolls
The four members of Abba as silicon dolls. Photo: Nora Lorek/TT

Mamma Mia! Abba reunite as silicon dolls

The dream of many an Abba fan (almost) came true on Tuesday afternoon as the four members reunited at a Swedish museum – as life size silicon dolls. READ  

800 staff sent home after Norwegian strike action
A Norwegian flight grounded in Oslo on Sunday. Photo: TT

800 staff sent home after Norwegian strike action

UPDATED: Hundreds of workers could be sent home without pay as Scandinavian airline Norwegian threatens a lockout of workers if a strike affecting Swedish and Norwegian staff is not resolved by Wednesday morning. READ  

Sweden moves to scrap debated budget goal
Sweden's Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson at a press conference on Tuesday. Photo: Janerik Henriksson/TT

Sweden moves to scrap debated budget goal

The Swedish government announced on Tuesday that it wants to scrap the country's budget-surplus target, aiming to axe a policy that critics consider outdated. READ  

Sweden leads the way in EU's 5G tech race
Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg at the Mobile World Congress. Photo: Björn Ewenfeldt/TT

Sweden leads the way in EU's 5G tech race

The mobile technology race is on with Swedish telecom giant Ericsson set to team up with academics and industry partners to have 5G broadband solutions ready for Sweden by 2020 as the EU pushes for greater connectivity across the continent. READ  

Presented by Greenback
Expert US tax preparation for Americans in Sweden

Expert US tax preparation for Americans in Sweden

If you dread filing your US expat taxes each year, you aren’t alone. But Greenback Expat Tax Services can prepare your taxes efficiently, accurately and at a fair, honest price. READ  

Opinion
Why can't refugees travel to Sweden legally?
Migrants rescued in the Pozzallo harbour, Sicily last month. Photo: TT

Why can't refugees travel to Sweden legally?

Refugees should not be forced to make dangerous journeys to Europe in order to seek asylum, argues Liberal Party MEP Cecilia Wikström, who also wants to see other EU states joining Sweden and Germany in taking in more people from war-torn nations. READ  

'Sweden is not any closer to joining Danes in Nato'
Sweden's Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

'Sweden is not any closer to joining Danes in Nato'

Sweden’s new military co-operation agreement with Denmark should not be seen as a step closer to Nato membership, Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist has told The Local. READ  

159 miners rescued from fire in central Sweden
Emergency services outside the mine on Tuesday morning. Photo: TT

159 miners rescued from fire in central Sweden

A fire broke out at a mine in Garpenberg in central Sweden at around 9am on Tuesday morning, with 159 people rescued by 10.30am. READ  

Just four protestors at Sweden anti-Islam rally
Four anti-Islam protestors turned up at the rally. Photo: TT

Just four protestors at Sweden anti-Islam rally

UPDATED: Counter-demonstrators dramatically outnumbered anti-Islam protesters at a Pegida rally in Linköping in southern Sweden, with reports that just four people turned up to support the right wing group, while up to 400 others rallied in support of diversity. READ  

Sweden eyes fingerprint scanning to stop fraud
Some passengers are already checked at Stockholm's Arlanda airport. Photo: TT

Sweden eyes fingerprint scanning to stop fraud

Sweden needs to beef up its border security with fingerprint scanning to stop passport fraud, a government inquiry has argued as the country grapples with unprecedented levels of immigration. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Accelerated for Ice Music
Dylan guitarist makes music history in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Expert US tax preparation for Americans in Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Eknäs, Nacka
Lifestyle
Madonna set for first Stockholm gig
Sponsored Article
Ten tips for succeeding as a start-up in Sweden
Blog updates

27 February

Editor’s blog, February 27th (The Local Sweden) »

"Our most read story this week got picked up by global media from Al Jazeera to..." READ »

 

18 February

The mysterious -s, part 2 (The Swedish Teacher) »

"-s expressing “each other” (reciprocal verbs) You have most likely used this form of the verbs..." READ »

 
 
 
Technology
How you could soon be charging your phone from Ikea furniture
Sponsored Article
Tourist or lifer: what sort of expat are you?
Gallery
People-watching: February 27th - March 1st
Business & Money
Ten Swedish start-ups you haven't heard of (yet)
National
How could Swedes' passion for 'fika' help cut nerve disease?
National
IN PICTURES: Swedes in 'ring of peace' protest
National
Why Copenhagen attacks led a Swedish uni to cancel artist's lecture
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Super cute sloth twins charm visitors to Swedish zoo
Lifestyle
Meet Sweden's first woman chef to win a Michelin star
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden: February 26th - March 5th
Accelerated for Ice Music
What is Bob Dylan's guitarist doing in northern Sweden?
Features
How well do you know Sweden's top celebrity couples?
Business & Money
Are company boards 'too white' in Sweden?
Gallery
People-watching: February 25th
Technology
Sweden is dubbed second most 'digital' nation in European Union
National
Why more Swedes want a sex change
National
The return of Sweden's Ace of Base
National
Why has Julian Assange's case been going on for so long?
National
'21' or 'IS'? Swedish police confuse birthday with Islamist extremism
National
Spring has sprung in Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Ängelholm
National
How to never miss your favourite weekly features on The Local
National
Is Sweden home to the world's oldest living cat?
Gallery
IN PICTURES: The life and career of Fredrik Reinfeldt
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Princess Estelle through the years
National
Why are Swedish Jews worried?
Gallery
People-watching: February 19th-22nd
National
'Racist' bird names banned in Sweden
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden this week
National
Nobel prize to go under hammer
National
Swede named 'Fanny' banned from getting UK loyalty card
National
Spotlight on the Swedes that could be funding Islamists
Sponsored Article
Are you an American expat? How to face FATCA
Gallery
People-watching: February 18th
National
Is a chocolate crime wave sweeping across Sweden?
National
What we know about the Copenhagen shootings suspect
National
Danish Ambassador: 'We'll live our lives the way we always have'
National
What does this '90s pop act have to do with a former minister?
Lifestyle
How to embrace Sweden's creamy semla bun tradition
National
Did this Swedish hotel really refuse a gay couple?
National
Why are so many escalators down on Stockholm's Metro?
Gallery
Property of the week: Kungsbacka
Sponsored Article
'Immigration is critical' for Stockholm’s future
Sponsored Article
Stockholm job fair helps immigrant entrepreneurs
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

950
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