People from time immemorial have been fascinated by death, the great unknown. Countless mythologies, beliefs and legends are woven around this reality of life in many cultures and one of them is that of the Grim Reaper. It’s said that Grim Reaper appears before those who are destined to die.
Here’s a man, who dresses up as the Grim Reaper, calls himself the Swim Reaper, but saves lives! This Swim Reaper is certainly not after your soul. He’s a good Samaritan dressed as the Grim Reaper, who delivers a message to the people, especially the young, not to make bad calls in water and be foolhardy, since it may lead to drowning.
Unlike the Grim Reaper, Swim Reaper is not omnipresent but lurks on the high-risk beaches, lakes, rivers and waterways of New Zealand. According to him, most drownings are preventable. He urges all to exercise caution when near or into the water and to think of safety first.
Why New Zealand? This is because this country averages around 80 drowning deaths each year that is preventable. In 2016 alone, there were 105 drowning deaths, of which 81 were preventable. Those who drowned, but shouldn’t have, were between the ages of 15 and 34. His mission in life is to bring down the number of drownings in the risk-group by instilling some fear in them by posing as the grotesque-looking Grim Reaper. Can there be a more hard-hitting way than this!
The Swim Reaper not only visits the high-risk locales near the water bodies but also targets the young through messages on Instagram, Facebook and Snap Chat. Of course, he’ll not be found in places made safe, but only at the risky spots which the young usually make a beeline for.
The force behind this noble initiative of Swim Reaper is the Water Safety New Zealand and ACC, who are working together to prevent unwanted drowning deaths and injuries of Kiwis, just because they made wrong decisions.
The Swim Reaper takes it upon himself to remind young males, out to prove their bravado in water, that it’s great to enjoy the beautiful riverbanks and beaches, but not at the risk of their lives. They should avoid acting on bad choices around water since it can have potentially deadly consequences for them.
That people are sitting up and taking notice of the Swim Reaper is indicated by his over 400,000 fan-following on Instagram alone.
The Swim Reaper