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Another teenager drowns in disused quarry

POLICE divers had to be called in to recover the body of a 15-year-old schoolboy who died last week while swimming in a disused quarry on the outskirts of Edinburgh.

The teenager, who is understood to have lived locally, was swimming in Humbie Quarry, Kirkliston, at around 5pm on Thursday 30 July, when he got into difficulties and disappeared under the water.

Two friends who were swimming with him at the time managed to raise the alarm at a nearby house and emergency services arrived at the scene shortly before 6pm.


The boy’s body was recovered around 5h later following a major search operation involving Lothian and Borders Police and Fire and Rescue teams, Forth Coastguard and a Royal Navy helicopter.

This latest tragedy comes just weeks after a similar incident in which another 15-year-old boy drowned in a disused quarry in Derbyshire, and some three months after an 18-year-old fell to his death in a disused quarry near Nuneaton.

Despite repeated seasonal warnings by the Mineral Products Association (MPA) and RoSPA about water safety and the dangers of trespassing in quarries, the summer months generally see a higher incidence of trespass at both operational and disused sites.

The industry continues to do its best to deter trespassers by fencing off quarries, erecting warning signs and working with schools and youth groups to educate youngsters about the hazards, yet according to a recent MPA survey of quarry managers, nearly 60% of respondents had experienced problems of trespass within the past 12 months.

Disused quarries, as in the case of the three recent teenage fatalities, pose particular safety issues because they are not usually manned.


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