York is located on the confluence of two rivers:  The Foss and The Ouse.  It is prone to flooding from the River Ouse and has an extensive network of flood defences with walls along the river and a liftable barrier across the River Foss where it joins the River Ouse at Blue Bridge.  Both rivers have been the scene of a number of drowning fatalities.  The circumstances of these fatalities range from suicide to accidental death, however, more recently, a high proportion have occurred where alcohol has been a contributing factor.  In 2014, four deaths within a short time period led to the commissioning of an audit of York’s rivers by RoSPA.  The resulting report made recommendations which have resulted in the implementation of  a number of enhanced safety measures.  A multi-agency River Safety Group has been established and meets regularly to monitor risk and ensure that we are working together to regularly raise awareness of river safety.  We work closely with York Rescue Boat, who have provided an excellent service in preventing river incidents and working with the emergency services to assist in searches. To find out more about them, click the link below:



Safer neighbourhoods