Angling Safely

Ways To Stay Safe When Angling 

Always check the weather conditions and sea forecast before heading out

We all love Angling. It's one of the biggest participatory sports in the UK and one that anyone can take up and get into. However what you may not think of the dangers that Angling can at times pose to you or those around you. Being by water has its risks, whether that be rivers, lakes or the sea it is important to be careful. That's why at Taskers Angling we thought it would be helpful to outline some of the key ways in which the RNLI say you can stay safe by the water. 


Between 2011 and 2015 50 Anglers lost their lives when fishing just by the coast. You may think think that it may not happen to you but it is best to be prepared. When talking about sea fishing it is important to wear a lifejacket. You are four times more likely to survive if you have a life jacket on compared to if you don't. It's an easy step to take which could really make a big difference in keeping you safe.


VHF/DSC radios will send a distress message to all vessels and shore stations in range. Requires an operator’s licence.

Example of equipment 


Ensuring that you have the correct equipment to contact someone for help is also valuable preparation which should help to keep you safe. When by the sea equipment such as VHF/DSC radios, Personal Locator Beacons (PLBs) and trackers are vital to alerting other boats or the RNLI of any problems on the water. If though you are coarse fishing by a river or lake the steps you can take are  making sure you have a mobile phone to contact someone, letting someone know where you have gone or go with a friend.


If night fishing then these steps become even more important as in the dark Angling becomes more dangerous. Taking all these steps along with making sure you are fully equipped to stay warm and having enough light are vital steps which need to be taken. 

A boating safety advice session from the RNLI 

When Angling the most common danger any Angler will face is falling into the water. This can happen whether you are by a river, lake or the sea and no matter which setting can have dangerous consequences. Falling into freezing water in particular has the added hazard of causing you to go into cold water shock which can cause a heart attack. This tends to happen in waters with a temperature lower than 15 degrees. The average temperature of UK waters is 12 so even in the summer there is a chance the water could be cold enough to cause shock. 

An angler wearing a lifejacket while fishing on the rocks 

In order to inform people best on what to do in this situation the RNLI has a respect the water campaign. As part of this campaign there are steps laid out which Anglers can follow if they find themselves in a situation where they have fallen into the water. These include: 

  • Fight your instinct to thrash around.
  • Lean back, extend your arms and legs.
  • If you need to, gently move them around to help you float.
  • Float until you can control your breathing.
  • Only then, call for help, swim to safety or continue floating until help arrives.


We hope that these steps outlined will help you stay safe when you are out Angling. We feel it is important that when out fishing you understand the risks attached and are best prepared against them. 


Photos courtesy of the RNLI