People tempted to make the most of the summer as warm weather is forecast to continue into this weekend are being urged to take care and behave responsibly.
The warning comes from the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority - and though the park doesn’t cover Bute, most if not all of the safety tips issued by the authority are as valid on and around Bute as within the park itself.
The park authority has had to deal with numerous incidents in recent weeks relating to speeding on the water, the use of lifejackets, hypothermia and near misses between swimmers and other water users.
For those planning to camp out around Bute this weekend here’s a few simple hints:
· Take rubbish home and recycle what you can
· Never cut down or damage trees to make a fire
· Use a stove if possible
· Use a public toilet if possible, if there are no public toilets find a spot away from open water, burns or rivers and use a trowel to bury your waste
· Avoid camping too close to others
· Keep noise and lights low after 9pm so wildlife and other people are not disturbed.
Inspector Gerry McMenemy, from Police Scotland, sai: “The water temperature can still be extremely cold, despite the temperature on land being hot, and this means you can get into difficulty within seconds.
“Underwater obstructions and undercurrents can be present and many lochs have steeply shelving shorelines meaning that people can quickly get out of their depth.
“Please don’t drink alcohol and then go swimming or take part in other recreational water activities. Alcohol affects people’s judgement and abilities and people can easily make dangerous decisions when under the influence of alcohol and put themselves at extreme risk.”