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Warning Over "Tombstoning" in Dorset

West Bay

8:24am 9th July 2014

Young thrill seekers are dicing with death by jumping off East Pier at West Bay, narrowly missing boats in the harbour.

The practise is called "tombstoning".

PC Scott McGregor of Bridport Police said: "We have had several reports over the last few months, where concerns have been raised by the public about the activity of people jumping off the pier at West Bay. On one occasion colleagues attended to prevent individuals from putting themselves and boat users in the harbour at risk."

In the last five years seven people have been badly injured from doing it in Dorset.

Rob Sansom is from the Coastguard in Weymouth - he explains the dangers.

"Any submerged objects like rocks which may not be visible can cause serious injury if you jump onto them.  The shock of the cold water can make it difficult to swim and string currents can sweep people away which means they can get into trouble very easily."

Cllr Robert Gould, Leader of West Dorset District Council, said: "Bridport has a very active harbour with boats moving in and out on a regular basis, we strongly advise people against this activity as it is both irresponsible and potentially dangerous."

Figures from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency show that in the past five years, seven people have been badly hurt from tombstoning in Dorset.

To report a dangerous incident along the coastline, please call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

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