Perils of the Pier

High tide at Leven Promenade
High tide at Leven Promenade

Young people in Leven enjoying the bursts of warm weather by the water are being urged to do so safely.

The harbour area at the Shorehead end of the Promenade has become something of a magnet for youngsters – some of whom like to heighten the fun at high tide on hot days by jumping into the water.

But, while some in the community say it’s a bit of fun and the youngsters are sensible enough to know the dangers, there’s general advice to take care while “tombstoning”, as it’s known – and to be really safe, don’t do it.

Enthusiasts of wake boarding and other water pursuits have told the Mail the area favoured by the leapers often attracted dumped debris, such as shopping trolleys, and other hidden hazards.

Leven shop boss Julie Herd recently saw some youngsters “taking risks, be it getting trapped by the tide or mucking about at the railings” when the tide was high.

“I’m not a kill joy but please warn them about the dangers down there,” she said.

“The tide comes in extremely quickly and the strength of the waves is fierce. “I love watching them enjoying themselves but don’t want to read about them after an event. Quite a few adults were turning back, watching in case, so it wasn’t just me.”

Community Inspector Donald Jenks of Police Scotland urged youngsters to have fun and enjoy the good weather but to stay in groups and not take any unnecessary risks by the water.

Joe Mitchell, Coastguard sector manager at Granton, said: “We always urge people to have fun but stay safe when out enjoying our beautiful coastline.

“But jumping from piers, cliffs and rocks – or tombstoning – is a big concern, as it’s extremely dangerous. Water depth alters with the tide, so what was a deep pool at lunchtime might be a shallow puddle by teatime.

“Objects like rocks may not be visible either, and they can cause serious injury if you jump on to them.”