A new campaign by the Port of London Authority wants to reduce the safety risks for all Thames users

A Port of London Authority (PLA) safety campaign is looking to improve all river users’ awareness of how to share the water safely with smaller, vulnerable recreational craft on the tidal Thames.

The campaign features seven posters focusing on themes including the need for suitable lights and high viz clothing, being mindful of causing wash which can tip rowers out of their boats, river positioning, lifejackets and being aware of river traffic density in central London.

The posters are being progressively distributed to river users, rowing and other sporting clubs along the river.

The PLA’s recreation harbour master Jon Beckett said: “This campaign is aimed not only at encouraging paddlers and rowers to make themselves more visible and improve their river safety. We also want to make skippers of motor cruisers, sailing boats and commercial vessels, more aware of the vulnerabilities of smaller, more exposed vessels.”

Paul Hyman, stand-up paddle boarder and managing director of Active360 has welcomed the campaign.

He said: “We love getting out on the Thames. Paddling through London is one of the best feelings, but we need to make sure we stay in the right places and are visible to the larger boats. The campaign’s really good for us as a reminder of the simple things we need to do to stay safe. Just as importantly, it’s making sure that the skippers of the bigger boats are looking out for us and helping us stay safe.”

The latest PLA river safety initiative follows on from the ‘Lookout!’ campaign, developed with the Thames Regional Rowing Council and launched last year.