Take care when you go fishing

Attending duties as a coach educator, I drove over to Strelley Hall in Nottingham last weekend, to attend a meeting of the Angling Development Board and there are a couple of things from the meeting I’d like to share with you.

The main topic of the meeting may be of interest to any anglers considering becoming an angling coach.

The ADB are planning the launch of a new, more dynamic Level One Certificate in Coaching Angling. It’s a two-day course and will provide you with an introduction to the principles and practices of coaching safe and ethical angling activities to adults and children. You should already be an experienced, competent angler and at least 16 years of age to attend. The course will cost just £220 with certification awarded by 1st4sport Qualifications. If any anglers are interested, check out the Angling Trust website on www.anglingtrust.net and click to the ADB link.

The second point I’d like to make, is during the meeting we were shown the outcomes of angling accidents that have occurred during 2010 and it was grisly viewing. In general, anglers are pretty blasé about health and safety, we just want to get to the water’s edge as quickly as possible - and start fishing, guilty as charged, I’m afraid. But many of the accidents could have been avoided with just a little thought.

Many disturbing photographs were shown of anglers with barbed hooks embedded in hands and faces. One ‘lucky’ carp angler had a 4oz lead embedded in his chest. I say ‘lucky,’ because he survived what could have been a terrible fatality. He was tying a knot in his line and had trapped the lead under his foot, heaving on the line to tighten a knot, the lead slipped and powered into his chest.

Another distressing incident involved overhead power cables. A young angler, pole fishing underneath the cables was electrocuted and suffered 32 per cent burns to his legs. He has since had both his feet amputated.

We have to remember the poles we use nowadays contain carbon, an excellent conductor of electricity. You don’t have to touch an overhead electric power line to suffer an electric shock, as at high voltages, electricity can travel through the air to make contact. Take a little extra care next time you go fishing!