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A 10-year-old child died on Mykonos island

12 August 2014 / 12:08:26  GRReporter
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Many people had feared that an accident would happen at some point on "Kalo Livadi" beach on Mykonos island as boats, scooters, jet skis and sunbathers swim in the same place, and speedboats sail at a high speed straight among bathers in the sea. Ultimately, the tragedy happened on Monday afternoon when a 10-year-old boy died while playing in the water.

According to the information available so far, the boy had been riding an inflatable attraction, towed by a speedboat of a water sports company, when he had suddenly fallen into the water. The driver of the boat was aware of what happened and returned to find him but did not see him and hit him with the boat propeller.

An investigation began immediately after the accident to determine who was to blame. Meanwhile, it is clear that in the past there were reports on the operation of the water sports company and on whether it observed safety requirements.

Residents of, and visitors to, Mykonos island, state that there were a lot of complains on the operation of the water sports company on that beach. More accurately, many times boat drivers returned to the beach at a high speed, scaring the swimming holidaymakers who were trying to protect themselves.

Horror for visitors to "Kalo Livadi" beach

Many inflatable boats, vessels, scooters, jet skis, etc sail in the sea around "Kalo Livadi" beach, seriously impeding the access of tourists to the sea. The high speed of the motor vessels combined with the waves that are due to the usual Mykonos wind horrify the swimmers as speedboat drivers often do not notice them and there is a constant danger of them being hurt, in addition to the dangerous water sports with inflatable boats and other attractions.

The riders of inflatable bananas and belts usually end up in the water, as this is part of the attraction, which is the responsibility of the towing boat driver. Using the waves, the foam formed by the boat engine and, of course, the speed of the boat, he can overturn the inflatable attractions and their riders fall into the water. However, when this takes place in an area where boats, jet skis and bathers are "one on top of the other," such an attraction cannot observe the safety requirements.

Yesterday's tragic incident led to the apprehension of the person in charge for water sports on that beach and the driver of the boat. They both claim to have the necessary permits but, despite this, an investigation has begun to establish those responsible for the death of the child. According to unconfirmed reports, the same company committed tax violations but they have not been proven and have nothing to do with the tragic incident.

It is not yet clear whether the safety measures provided in the law have been taken

As is known, the law on water sports and attractions is very clear and the Coast Guard is responsible for its strict observation which, according to residents of, and visitors to, the island does not apply to "Kalo Livadi" beach.

Those in charge of water attractions are obliged to put clearly visible round yellow buoys to mark the distance in the sea that swimmers usually reach.

For the safety of the people in the sea, those who have rented motor boats and attractions are required to form a corridor with a width of between 7 and 15 metres and length depending on the characteristics of each region.

Distance from beaches that motor boats and attractions must observe

For water scooters (jet ski, surf jet, sea beetle, sea bike) the distance is as follows: 100 metres from the buoys, 300 metres from the normal distance reached by swimmers if  there are no buoys, and 500 metres from the coast, if there are no swimmers. In addition, they are banned from sailing between 02:00 pm and 05:00 pm in June, July, August and September. Finally, they are not allowed to have external propellers.

Surfboards can sail farther from the buoys or 200 metres farther from the distance that is usually reached by swimmers. Upon entering the sea and exiting it, surfers have to be cautious to avoid disturbing bathers.

Motor boats and other attractions are permitted to set off from the coast and return to it if there are no bathers within a distance of 100 metres.

Tags: Water attractionsJet skiScootersTragic incidentMykonos island
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