Warning over cliff falls as weather deteriorates

People have been urged to take care when near cliffs, as the cold weather means they could be more at risk of collapse.

The CoastSafe campaign – which is designed to make coastlines safer and raise water safety awareness – echoed a plea made by the coastguard illustrating just how dangerous cliffs can be.

They called on people to stay clear from the edges and bases of cliffs.

And with colder weather coming – snow is forecast for parts of Devon today while a Met Office yellow weather warning remains in place for snow and ice – they say the dangers have increased.

“With a great deal of wet weather followed by cold temperatures means a freeze/thaw effect on our cliffs will leave then vulnerable to falls,” they said in a tweet.

“Stay clear from edges and bases of cliffs

“They will give no warning when they go.”

The coastguard has also warned people on the dangers of cliffs and the need to treat them with respect.

They urged people to take the following precautions: Check tide times and weather before heading out, beware of sheer drops, eroding edges and falling rocks, take pictures at a safe distance and keep dogs on leads.

East Devon District Council – which has seen a number of cliff falls in recent years, added: “Rockfalls and landslides are unpredictable events, occurring without warning, and can cause serious injury or death.

“Warning signs can be found in areas managed by us. The absence of a sign does not indicate there is no risk and you should always take care around the cliffs of East Devon as all are made of soft rock and pose a cliff fall danger.

“Good practice when on the beach is to stay well clear of the cliff base and keep an eye out for fresh fall material or water running down the cliffs which may indicate an area that is weakened and loose. If in doubt, don’t walk under or near the cliffs.

“The Coastguard advises that beach users stay at least the height of the cliff away e.g. if a cliff is 20 metres high, a distance of 20 metres should be kept.”

Devon Live – Devon News