Each year in the U.S., there are a reported 4,000 drownings. Drowning rates are highest for children ages 1 to 4. On average, 350 children under the age of five drown each summer.
Swimming is a fun activity, but with such alarming stats, it’s clear that this topic needs attention from parents. Drowning can happen within 20-50 seconds, not minutes. It’s important to proceed with proper safety and education before you take the plunge with your little ones.
Here are some tips to ensure you next trip to the pool is fun and safe:
– Do not use inflatables, noodles or puddle jumpers as a substitute for supervision. And be sure to clear them from the pool when not in use as little ones can get trapped underneath them.
– Be at an arm’s length in the water for younger swimmers.
– Designate a lifeguard or water watcher to keep an eye on the water at all times from outside the pool.
– Keep a phone near the pool at all times so that you don’t have to leave to answer a call. It will also be close by if you need to call for help.
– Take a CPR class.
– Do not consider children that have taken swim lessons “drown proof.”
If you are a pool owner:
– Install a 60” fence with a self-locking latch and alarm.
– Store chemicals for the pool safely and away from little ones.
– Implement a no running policy to prevent people from slipping into the pool.
– Don’t allow dunking, throwing people into the pool unaware or other general roughhousing.
Swimming allows you to get outside, get some vitamin D, and is great exercise! But knowing how to protect yourself and keep your family safe is crucial. Enjoy the rest of the summer and swim safely, my friends.