Patrols at spot where teenager lost his life

By Connie Osborne Wednesday 16 April 2014 Updated: 17/04 16:36

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Buy photos » Patrols are being carried out around water spots across Redditch following the death of Richard Fellows. Picture by Marcus Mingins 1214024MMR2

COMMUNITY cycle teams will be patrolling the spot where a teenager drowned in a bid deter people from entering the water over the Easter holidays.

Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service will be sending out pairs of cyclists across Redditch from Tuesday to Sunday (April 22 to 27).

The teams will be out for four hours a day at a variety of times and will riding past spots which include Arrow Valley Lake and the five tunnels where 15-year-old Richard Fellows lost his life on March 16.

They will be wearing specially designed cycle kits and will be on distinctive bikes to act as a visible presence while offering water safety advice and promoting positive activities for young people to get involved with.

They will also look out for potential fire risks such as abandoned cars, empty properties and fly tipping, to discourage arson and anti-social behaviour during the holidays.

The scheme has been partly funded by North Worcestershire Community Safety Partnership and the Kingfisher Shopping Centre.

Watch Commander Shaun D’Oliveira, responsible for community safety at HWFRS, said being able to interact and help educate young people about the dangers of playing in or near the water was key to the service.

"We would like to highlight the dangers of open water and encourage people, whatever their age, to take extra care," he said.

"We also want to make young people aware of the dangers of starting fires deliberately, and highlighting the consequences of their behaviour to those involved as well as the negative impact it has within the local community, is of great importance to the Fire Service.

He added: "We will be carefully targeting resources towards areas of the town that have experienced pockets of anti-social behaviour, bin fires etc in the past, and monitoring the impact that this has on call-outs to these types of incidents."

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