Drunken teens ‘risking lives by jumping into Tyne’

BOOZE WARNING ... police are concerned about teenagers drinking then swimming at Jarrow Riverside Park.
BOOZE WARNING ... police are concerned about teenagers drinking then swimming at Jarrow Riverside Park.

POLICE have warned youngsters about the dangers of playing in water after a group of teenagers jumped into the Tyne after boozing.

Officers were called to Jarrow Riverside on Tuesday when a group of teenagers admitted to police they had been jumping into the river while under the influence of alcohol.

It happened near the skate park and entrance to the pedestrian Tyne Tunnel.

Now officers are urging youngsters to refrain from taking part in this activity at any time - but especially after drinking.

Neighbourhood Inspector Ian King warned: “Open water, particularly rivers, can be deceptive.

“Even if the water looks calm, there can be powerful currents and tides which pose a risk, even to people who are strong swimmers.

“People under the influence of alcohol will also have their judgement and physical abilities impaired, and they could easily get into difficulties, resulting in tragic consequences.

“The water can be particularly cold, even on hot days, and this can have dramatic effects on the body that could lead to drowning.

“People should stay away and encourage their friends to do the same.

“I’d also ask parents to have an awareness of where their children are, and to discourage them from taking part in such activities.”

As the summer approaches, patrols are stepping up along the riverside between Jarrow and Hebburn to stop incidents like this and tackle anti-social behaviour.

Insp King added: “We know youths gather in this area, we’ve had concerns raised by residents and reports of anti-social behaviour, which is why we routinely increase our patrols as the weather warms up and over the school holidays.

“We want the Riverside and Marina to be a place for everyone to enjoy, and the aim of these patrols is not only to deter and take action against anti-social behaviour and underage drinking, but also reassure visitors and those living nearby.”

Anyone with concerns about anti-social behaviour in their area should contact police on 101, extension 69191.