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Safety Around Reservoirs

Be aware of hidden dangers


Hidden dangers found at reservoirs include deep cold water and on a hot day, underwater plant life and steep banks. For these reasons and in the interests of our customer's health and safety, we do not encourage swimming or diving in any of our reservoirs - whatever the weather.


Winter sports, such as ice-skating, are also not encouraged on our frozen reservoirs due to the immediate risk of injury and drowning from freezing water.

Reservoirs

Reservoirs are man made features and because of their purpose, they have a number of hidden dangers

  • Built structures such as dams
  • spillways (overflows)
  • water intakes (underwater pipe work that takes water out of the reservoirs
For your own safety do not swim in man made structures like these.

If you intend to access a reservoir for the first time, you can contact Scottish Water on our Customer Helpline on 0845 601 8855 to find out more about the reservoir. However, please remember that it is your own responsibility to decide whether the reservoir is suitable for the activity that you intend to carry out.

Scottish Outdoor Access Code

More information on the Access Code can be found at www.outdooraccess-scotland.com

The Scottish Outdoor Access Code has been developed by Scottish Natural Heritage and offers guidance on the rights and responsibilities of both the public and Land Managers such as Scottish Water.

The code is based on three key principles:

1.Respect the interests of other people

2.Care for the environment

3.Take responsibility for your own actions

Help us keep our reservoirs clean and tidy by taking your litter home.

Why does Scottish Water store water?

Reservoirs are used by Scottish Water to provide storage for water before it is treated and made safe for you to use and drink. It is a high priority for Scottish Water that the water quality in our reservoirs is maintained at a standard high enough to make it possible to treat. In order to do this, special care must be taken to limit the amount of pollution entering the water environment.

Group access

Scottish Water cannot advise you on specific safety information or requirements relating to your particular recreational activity. Group leaders and individual participants are expected to take responsibility for their own actions and make an informed decision as to whether a reservoir is suited to their particular activity.

Facilities

We would encourage groups intending to access any reservoirs in Scotland to contact Scottish Water in advance.

Hygiene

We would ask that you ensure your canoe or boat has been thoroughly washed before your visit.

Fishing

Remember that the water environment is also enjoyed by local fishermen and anglers.

General Restrictions to our Reservoirs

The Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 creates a right of responsible access to land and water in Scotland. This includes access to reservoirs for water based activities.

1. Vehicles

Access rights to our reservoirs do not apply to motorised vehicles.

2. Built structures

Access to built structures such as dams, intake towers and access bridges is also excluded from the access. In the case of access with vehicles, cycles, etc. access will only be permitted where there are suitable roads or pathways already present near the dam.

If you have any comments or concerns during your visit please contact our Customer Helpline on 0845 601 8855 - we will be happy to hear from you.

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Safety Around Reservoirs (pdf)

29/05/2012
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Hidden dangers found at reservoirs include deep cold water and on a hot day, underwater plant life and steep banks. For these reasons and in the interests of our customers' health and safety, we do not encourage swimming or diving in any of our reservoirs - whatever the weather.