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GTA asks tourism operators to provide life guards to clients   
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The Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) has asked tourism operators with water bodies to provide life guards and life savers as a precautionary measure to forestall drowning.

The water bodies include swimming pools, the beaches and water in front engagements.

The GTA asked all tourism facility operators to take advantage of the periodic swimming pool attendant’s course organised by the Authority and expose their personnel to modern trends in life guarding and lifesaving technologies.

The GTA said it is going to keep a register of all beach/river front programme organisers to keep track of their activities as a way of mounting their programmes and operations.

The GTA made the recommendations in a release to the Ghana News Agency on Tuesday, in Accra in relation to the unfortunate news of the drowning of popular Ghanaian Musician Theophilus Tagoe, popularly known as “Castro” and a female friend at the Ada Estuary of the Volta River on Sunday, July 6.

The release said following the incident, the GTA dispatched a fact-finding team made up of the GTA Tema Regional Manager and two other officials from the Tema Office to Ada on Monday, July 7, to ascertain the facts on the ground.

It said the team was also to make recommendations and offer suggestions on safety and security at Ghana’s beaches, on water bodies and at water front facilities to prevent future occurrences of drowning and other related activities.

The team submitted its Report on Wednesday, July 9.

It said the facts as indicated in the Report states that on Friday, July 4, Castro, in the company of ace Ghanaian footballer/striker and Captain of the Black Stars, Asamoah Gyan, family members and friends checked in at Aqua Safari Resort also known as Ada Safari.

On Saturday July 5, the group relocated to Peace Holiday Resort at 1600 hours for lack of adequate rooms at Aqua Safari.

According to the release, on Sunday, July 6, the group had breakfast at Peace Holiday Resort and left for Aqua Safari to rent Jet Skis for cruising on the Volta River since Peace Holiday had none.

It stated that around lunch time, the group went out cruising and returned after 30 minutes. Castro, however, left for cruising again all by himself and as is customary with the Resort, he was fully equipped with a life jacket.

“Aqua Safari, according to investigation was not aware about the female friend he was supposed to have been with and where she was picked up, since he did not inform Aqua Safari that he was cruising accompanied.

“Our investigators also revealed that the accident occurred at the Volta Estuary, 10 kilometres away from Aqua Safari.”

The release stated that the Resort was informed of a floating jet ski and quickly set out to verify and organised a rescue operation involving local fishermen, marine police, local police and private individuals.

It said: “Our Investigation Team observed that Aqua Safari had a safety and monitoring system in place. Again clients for water sports were tested on their skills for operating the water crafts (jet skis, pontoons, speed boats,) before a client is allowed to cruise unaccompanied.”

It said all the necessary safety information is made available to a would-be patron and a disclaimer signed before any adventure on the water body.

It stated that the investigations revealed Aqua Safari had eight jet skis, four speedboats and two pontoons, whilst adequate and visible warning signals had been installed at vantage points at the Resort.

The release said Peace Holiday Resort also has warning signs for client’s safety whilst cruising.
Source: GNA

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