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Campaign Swim Safe – Protest Action in the Tbilisi Sea

28.05.2019

Today, campaign Swim Safe participating organizations held protest demonstration in the territory of the Tbilisi reservoir, near the so-called waterfall, which is one of the most dangerous places in Georgia. Representatives of the Human Rights Center, Progress Center, Article 42 of the Constitution, Fond Crystal and civil activists participated in the action.

During the summer time, dozens people die in the sea, in artificial water reservoirs, lakes and rivers in Georgia. The problem is created by spontaneously arranged recreation zones near the water bodies, where the help of rescue teams is not provided and safety of people is not ensured. Lack of warning banners and weak early-warning systems are the problem. It is necessary to timely and effectively inform society about the threats and risks originated as a result of natural disasters.
 
The tragic incident in the Lagodekhi Reserved Territories on May 26 once again demonstrated how acute these problems are.
 
The places, where swimming is prohibited, are particularly dangerous but the State and private companies do not protect them with solid barriers and often neither warning banners are erected there. 

In the past few years, several dozen people, including adults, drowned in the area of so-called waterfall in the Tbilisi Sea. HRC executive director Aleko Tskitishvili and Maka Tsiklauri appealed the Tbilisi City Court over the tragic incidents of 2016 and 2017 in this particular area.

The next trial is scheduled today, at 17:00 pm. The applicants request the Tbilisi City Hall to take adequate safety measures near the waterfall and arrange solid barriers, install surveillance cameras, and erect warning banners. The Water Distribution Company GWP is another plaintiff of the appeal in the part of compensation. Emergency Service is the third party in the proceedings. 

Campaign Swim Safe calls on the Government to timely take concrete steps to improve the legislation and to ensure the safety of citizens on water bodies.
 
Campaign Swim Safe was launched on July 16, 2018 with the initiative of Ana Dolidze, Human Rights Center, CENN and Progress Center. The Campaign unites organizations and civil activists who want to combat mortality on water bodies in Georgia. 


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