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Level 1

Level 1 Water Safety Awareness Module


This module is aimed at those working near known waters under controlled conditions with programmed activities, either for personal safety or for those with supervisory responsibility. People who need a minimum level of water- safety awareness and a basic emergency response capability.

  • A leader with responsibility for a group taking part in field work at the water margins. Water is calm with minimal current and no higher-risk factors such as steep edges, ledges and/or deep water with no intention for anyone to enter the water.
  • Lone worker operating from the bank or simply working near a water margin.
  • A park ranger with basic water safety rescue capability (land based).

Length of course

  • 6 hrs learning hours

Learning Outcomes

Level 1 is primarily knowledge based, although basic principles of rescue will be discussed and candidates will practice land based rescue techniques. By the end of the module candidates will be expected to:

  • Identify a range of open water hazards
  • Understand the effects of cold water immersion on the body
  • Demonstrate a minimum level of water safety and personal safety awareness
  • Show an understanding of legal requirements and duty of care applicable to group leaders
  • Understand principles of water safety, group management and risk assessment
  • Show an understanding of the principles of rescue and rescuer safety
  • Understand how to manage a group safely around the water margins
  • Understand key water safety issues
  • Apply practical risk management skills and show confidence in applying appropriate controls
  • Demonstrate competence in land based ‘Emergency Response’ rescues


To check candidates have acquired the basic knowledge to progress to Unit 2 candidates are required to score 80% in the questions detailed in Unit 1. Where candidates fail to achieve 80% the Instructor must address the learning needs and make a decision on whether the candidate is competent in all areas of the syllabus by the end of Unit 2.

Above information was provided by the RLSS.