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Safety Advice

Safety Advice

The organisations responsible for managing the Coast Path have developed these guidelines to help you have a safe walk. Please read and always follow them.

As well as following the Countryside Code, when you are walking the South West Coast Path remember:

Staying safe is your own responsibility - please look after yourself and other members of your group

  • Let someone know where you are going and what time you are likely to be back - mobile phone reception is patchy on the coast
  • Take something to eat and drink
  • Informal paths leading to beaches can be dangerous and are best avoided
  • If you are crossing a beach, make sure you know the tide times so you won’t be cut off

Keep to the path and stay away from cliff edges - please follow advisory signs and waymarks.

Whilst it is tempting to go close to cliff edges to peer over you should stay back from them:

  • as a slip or trip could be fatal
  • some cliffs overhang or are unstable and this is not always obvious
  • take particular care when the grass is short, as when wet it can be very slippery

Take special care of children and dogs – please look after them at all times.

  • Keep your dog under close control - see our dogs on the Coast Path page for more advice
  • Children and dogs may not see potential dangers – such as cliff edges - especially if they are excited
  • Do not disturb farm animals or wildlife – walk around cattle not between them, especially if they have calves
  • Cattle may react aggressively to dogs - if this happens, let your dog off the lead

Dress sensibly for the terrain and weather - wear suitable clothing and footwear and be ready for possible changes in the weather.

For your comfort:

  • Check the weather forecast before you set out
  • Protect yourself from the sun – sea breezes can hide its strength
  • On the coast. mist, fog and high winds are more likely and can be more hazardous
  • Wear comfortable footwear with a good grip
  • If the you are going far, take waterproofs and extra clothing, especially in cold weather

To enjoy your walk, stay within your fitness level – some sections of the Coast Path can be strenuous and/or remote.

  • Plan a walk that suits your fitness level
  • Find out about the section you plan to walk
  • Turn back if the walk is too strenuous for anyone in your group
  • Be aware that the surface of the Coast Path varies and will generally be more natural and more uneven away from car parks, towns and villages.
  • Remember that in remote areas or at quiet times you may not see another person for some time if you are in difficulties

In an emergency dial 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.

To help the emergency services locate you quickly they need to know where you are, so;

  • Learn to read a map to be able to accurately report your position – visit www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk
  • Look out for the small signs with the location and grid reference that are on many fingerposts and signs along the path.

     

     

     

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    • The South West Coast Path shared AdamBurtonPhotography.com's photo. The colour in the sky is really magical, as is the reflection in the water, in this great photo by Adam Burton. Please consider entering your photos like these in our annual photographic competition. www.southwestcoastpath.com/photo-competition There was a lovely colourful sky yesterday evening over the North Somerset coast. Fortunately I was up in Exmoor and was able to make the most of the conditions. more
    • Come and help to improve the Coast Path by walking on it! Join a guided walk in September and raise money for path improvements that are needed like this one on Portland. www.southwestcoastpath.org.uk more
    • The Dorset stretch of the Coast Path is full of beautiful views and incredible culture - not to mention the Jurassic Coast UNESCO section - come and join a guided walk here this September www.southwestcoastpath.org.uk more
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    • Hi, I thought your followers might like our recent book: Exmouth to Plymouth: Britain's Heritage Coast by Gary Holpin is a beautifully illustrated and informative book allowing the reader to submerge themselves, whether on foot, bicycle, in a car or simply from the comfort of their own armchair, in the wealth of fascinating history and folklore as well as the outstanding beauty that lies along the banks of this stunning coastline. http://goo.gl/61YSJe more
    • Calling all budding photo journalists. We need your help to promote the South West Coast Path. Do you want to see your work in print? Produce the most fabulous photo essay about the path and see it in the Western Morning News www.southwestcoastpath.com/newsapp/article/152/ www.southwestcoastpath.com more
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    • Do you fancy foraging for your lunch? Join forager Trudy Turrell on a clamber over seaweed and from sand dune to share on this unique walk in Bantham, South Devon this September. www.southwestcoastpath.org.uk/great-sw-walks/bookings/south-devon/find-your-lunch-on-bantham-beach/ There's lots of other South Devon guided walks to choose from as part of the Great South Walks event http://ow.ly/z3mN7 www.southwestcoastpath.org.uk more

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