For the 23rd year running, the Compagnie Nationale du Rhône has started its safety campaign along the Rhone. "Louloute the otter", the campaign mascot, warns the neighbouring population about the risks linked to fast changes in water levels in the Rhone downstream of dams. Instructions are posted on the yellow panels installed along the river.
Three messages of caution
The risks of fast changes in the water level of the Rhone downstream of dams are real. The rules for caution that must be respected in all circumstances are the following:
- Beware, water levels can rise very quickly
- It is dangerous to wander in the bed of this river, on the islands or on the gravel banks, as the water can rise suddenly at any moment following the operation of the hydropower plants and dams
- Obey the panels signalling that bathing is forbidden and watch over children at the water’s edge. The danger is real
An information campaign aimed at large sections of the public
A large array of communication media is used to disseminate the recommendations for caution given by "Louloute the otter":
- A major publicity campaign is deployed throughout the summer on the radio, on the web and in the regional press
- Flyers, pedagogical booklets, stickers and posters are distributed to town halls, associations, gendarmeries, post offices and posted directly on the banks by CNR's employees.
- Nearly 1,000 children at primary schools close to the river receive a pedagogical booklet