Call for safety steps at Burnham after Dylan's death
PUBLISHED: 08:53 14 September 2012 | UPDATED: 09:21 14 September 2012
MORE must be done to protect children at a Somerset beach where a four-year-old boy was swept away and drowned last month.
That is the view of a new online campaign group which is petitioning for new safety measures at Burnham.
Youngster Dylan Cecil died in August after slipping from the jetty and being dragged under the sea by strong currents.
His parents Darren and Rachel tried in vain to save him, but after a huge search operation spanning several days, Dylan’s body was found four days later.
A Facebook group entitled Make Burnham-on-Sea Safe For Our Children has now been formed, and boasts nearly 300 backers calling for new safety measures in the area.
Among them is Dylan’s mother Rachel McCollum, who describes herself as ‘heartbroken’ in one comment.
She also said: “Something being done is better then nothing or just talking about doing it.”
The group is now petitioning Sedgemoor District Council and the area’s MP Tess Munt to step in and take action to prevent further tragedies.
Campaigners say: “The signatories on this petition believe that safety in Burnham is of paramount importance given the tragic death of Dylan Cecil and action needs to be taken sooner rather than later before another innocent life is taken from us.
“Suggestions from the public as detailed below need to be taken seriously and acted upon now.”
The group adds: “Something like this should have never happened and would not have done if Burnham-on-Sea spent more money on safety instead of flowers to make the place look nice.”
Suggestions from supporters include fencing off the slipway to allow access only for boat-users and emergency services.
One backer, Sian Lees, said: “This should never have happened.
“Having that jetty like that would be like an upside down rollercoaster with no harness. It needs sorting before another poor family has to go through hell.”
And another, Kirsty Lockwood, said: “Something needs to be done to prevent this happening again.
“I’m sure if the signs were clearer and more bold all over the jetty then it would have prevented such a terrible tragedy.
“Now a poor family have lost their baby and Dylan has lost his life and still people think it’s fine how it is and nothing should be done. Are they for real?”