Campbell River youngsters learn to play safe around rivers

The rain threatened Wednesday morning but for the most part, it stayed away.

A good day for a swim in the Campbell River, right? Never mind it’s still March. Well, for a group of youngsters clad in wetsuits this week, the chilly Campbell River has been their classroom if not their playground.

They were taking part in a series of River Wise Safety Program courses put on by Destiny River Adventures in conjunction with Rescue Canada and Campbell River Parks and Recreation.

“Basically it’s teaching the youth how to play safe around the river,” said Jamie Turko owner of Destiny River Adventures, a swift water specialist with Campbell River Search and Rescue and an instructor with Rescue Canada, “how to recognize the safe areas, recognize the dangerous areas.”

Turko taught four levels of the River Wise program: River Start – for 5-8 year olds; River safe – 8-12; River Smart – 13-17; and River Wise – 17 and older.

The course objective is to teach youths how to prepare for a day on the river:

  • Recognizing danger and avoiding it, including foot entrapments and strainers.
  • Recognizing safe areas on the river.
  • Proper swimming techniques in moving water.
  • Proper wading techniques in moving water.
  • Keeping warm in and out of the water.
  • Participating in group recreation on the river.
  • Basic self rescue and how to rescue others.

Turko will be doing another River Wise program in the summer. If any parents are interested, call Destiny River Adventures at 250-287-4800.





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