World Ocean Day Swim on track for safe & compliant roll-out

World Ocean Day Swim on track for safe & compliant roll-out

Organisers of the World Oceans Day Swim in Durban on Saturday 5 June are confident that they can stage the event to its full capacity, following the country moving to Covid-19 lockdown level two on the weekend.

Dolphin Mile
Anthony Grote

Riding the surge of interest in the Dolphin Mile swims, the World Oceans Day Swim offers a choice of 800m, 1,6km, 3,2km and a full 5km swim, which the organisers say is the key to enabling them to stage the event in full compliance and with the safety of every swimmer a priority.

“Each of the races start in its own batch and once in the ocean the swimmers spread out quickly, so we will be well inside the threshold of 250 people gathered at the event at any one time,” said Sarah Ferguson, who’s Breathe NPO is the organiser and beneficiary of the swims.

“There has been an unbelievable amount of interest in doing the swims this Saturday,” said Ferguson, adding that a number of athletes in Durban for the Iron Man on Sunday are keen to take part as a warm-up on the same ocean swim course, with the forecast weather conditions looking excellent for the swims.

She added that she was fully confident that swimmers would fully comply with the lockdown regulations expected of them as this resonates with the core ethos of the event.

“We want people to be responsible, to respect one another and respect our oceans,” she said, pointing out that behavioural changes are what was needed to stem the problem of pollution in the oceans.

“Wear a mask until you are just about to be called to the water, but do not bring a disposable mask, but rather a cloth mask that you can tuck into your costume,” she said.

“Bring your own cup for a coffee afterwards. Pick up litter when you see it in the sea or on the beach. These are the habits we need to teach to everyone to help save our oceans,” she stressed.

Ferguson said that the interest in being part of the World Oceans Day Swim created an excellent platform to carry out the vital educational role that Breathe strives to deliver.

“The other objective for the day is to raise funds to help us continue our education initiatives, but we want people to make those donations online at home via our website so that we don’t create congestion on the day.

“There will be no prize-givings or social gathering, and swimmers will be asked to move off the beach and away from the race venue once they have finished their swim,” said Ferguson.

"Prizes will be handed to the respective winners as they leave the water," explained Ferguson.

“Judging by the mood and excitement, people are amped! This won’t dilute the energy and desire to make a statement as Durbanites that we are serious about the future of our oceans,” she said.

The World Oceans Day swim takes place on 5 June at the from the Point Yacht Club Beach Clubhouse.


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