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'High-risk' period ahead after spate of drownings across Australia



Swimmers have been urged to be extra vigilant around the nation's oceans and waterways after multiple people have drowned across the country in the past 24 hours.

A 50-year-old man died while swimming at a beach in Queensland on Monday, while another man drowned in shallow water at a riverside boat ramp in Victoria.

More than 50 people have died this year across Australia, according to the Royal Life Saving Summer Drowning Toll.

READ MORE: 'Gentle giant': Tributes flow for teen who drowned at Melbourne beach

Multiple dead in two days

A Truganina man died after he disappeared under the water in Glenaire, about 225 km from Melbourne.

Police said the man was standing in shallow water with children near a boat ramp in the Aire River around 10.30am on Monday.

The man was pulled from water in distress, but sadly died at the scene.

Hours later, a Queensland man died after he was pulled from the water unconscious at Delicate Nobby in Crescent Head.

Members of the public performed CPR however the man died at the scene.

READ MORE: How Australia will mark January 26 across the country

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Extra patrols over 'high risk period'

The drownings has sparked Life Saving Victoria to announce increased patrols around inland lakes in the coming days.

There have been 29 fatal drownings in Victoria since July and almost half of them occurred in inland waterways such as rivers, creeks, streams and lakes.

Over a horror three days in December, four separate drownings were recorded.

Life Saving Victoria General Manager of Lifesaving Services Liam Krige said the public needs to be educated about the risks waterways can bring.

Krige said the coming days have been classified as a "high-risk" period for lifeguards and emergency services. 

"It's a misconception that drowning mainly happens on the coast – people are almost three times more likely to drown at an inland waterway in Victoria," he said.

"We are urging Victorians to remember that your safety is your responsibility.

"If we can't see you, we can't save you, so make sure you seek out one of our more than 65 patrolled locations across coastal and inland waters."

The warnings come ahead of warm weather which is predicted to grace Sydney, Brisbane and Perth on Australia Day.

Meanwhile, it will begin to heat back up in Melbourne on Saturday, with a high of 36 degrees expected.

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