Summers are hot! You and your family are probably looking for ways to beat the heat and cool down while having fun at the same time. Sometimes the only way to enjoy a hot summer day is by the pool. However, it’s important to note the risks that accompany this popular Summertime activity and educate yourself on safe swimming practices. 76% of drowning deaths in the United States each year involve children under the age of 5. Though the pool is for relaxation and fun, safety should remain your number one priority.
Never Leave a Child Unattended
As a parent, you probably already know you should never leave your little ones unattended. This also applies to the pool and pool deck area. To make sure both parents get relaxation time, try designating an official watcher and take turns. Teach your child to never enter the water without asking a guardians permission first. About 70% of home drowning accidents happen when a child is not known to be in or near the pool.
Read All Warning Signs to Ensure Safe Swimming
If you are at a public pool, be aware of any cautionary signage and know their safe swimming rules. Some pools have rules specific to their location and they are required to disclose any known potential hazards if they are not yet fixed.
Enroll Your Children in Swim Lessons
Swimming is just as much a lifesaving skill as it is a fun Summertime activity. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends swim lessons for children starting at the age of 4. However, informal swim lessons can be beneficial between the ages of 1 and 4.
Stay Away from Drains
It’s crucial to teach your children to stay away from drains and suction outlets when playing in the pool. Hair, jewelry, limbs, and bathing suits can easily get stuck in a drain or suction opening.
Buy Proper Flotation Devices
Do not rely on toys or even the lifeguards at a public pool to keep your children safe. If you know your child does not yet know how to swim or is still learning, buy the proper flotation devices and have your child wear it at all times, not just when they’re in the water.
Portable First Aid Kit
If you are at a public pool and there are lifeguards on duty, they will have first aid equipment. But if you are at a private residence or your own backyard, consider making and keeping a first aid kit that is easily accessible from the pool.
Unfortunately, accidents still happen, even if you follow all the rules and precautions. It would be highly advisable to learn CPR so that in an emergency situation, you can take action. It is advisable to study this technique before hitting the pool, and you could even get certified. By learning CPR, you will have a skill that is valuable to your family’s safety and to the safety of others in your presence.
Find Designated Swim Areas
Just because a body of water looks safe does not mean that it is. Your child could be facing sharp rocks, wildlife, harsh currents, or many other dangers by swimming in an undesignated area. Look for signs indicating the area is meant for swimming.
Having a lifeguard on duty will give you an added level of security when letting your child have some summer fun in the water. Lifeguards know which areas are safe, what safe conduct is, and how to save a life when things go wrong. Their purpose is to keep watch, and more eyes are better than one when it comes to swimming safety.
Secure Your Pool
Install a pool fence to keep out small children and guard against accidental falls into the water. While this will be installed to ensure the safety of your family, it will have added benefits to neighborhood children and animals if your yard isn’t fenced. Many insurance companies will require you to have a fence installed before they will provide coverage.
Prepare For An Emergency
Teach your family how to dial 9-1-1 in the event of a swimming accident. Seconds can mean the difference when it comes to drowning. If you can’t find your child, always check the water first before looking elsewhere. In 77% of home drowning accidents, the child had been missing for less than five minutes.