Summer Water Safety

26
Jun
2013


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Welcome to the 30 Days of Summer – Go-To Guide for Moms!

Day Twenty Six

Beaches and pools are synonymous with summer, in fact, when you’ve got a hot day brewing – there is no better place to cool off than the beach, lake, water park or swimming pool.  But amid all the fun and games it is important to put safety first.

Drowning is responsible for more deaths among children 1-4 than any other cause except congenital anomalies (birth defects).   CDC

That statistic is certainly one to catch your attention.  Learning to swim and be safe in and around the water are important survival skills. Accidents only take a few seconds to occur, but they can often be prevented by ensuring your loved ones follow simple water safety guidelines.

Earlier this summer I ran across this article which talks about what drowning really looks like and how we’ve made mistakes in the past with how we ‘thought’ a person acted when they were drowning.  You will want to check it out if you have not read it.

Water safety is important.  In order to keep safety at the top of the list, here are a few safety tips to keep in mind:

General Tips

  • Make sure children are supervised by an adult at all times.
  • Establish rules for your family and enforce them without fail.
  • No one, not even adults, should ever swim alone.  Always be in the water with a buddy.
  • Always have a cell phone available near the pool.
  • Be prepared in an emergency by learning lifesaving, first aid and CPR techniques.stearns-life-vest
  • If your child does not swim, make sure you have life vest on them.
    This one from Stearns is very popular and isn’t as confining as a traditional life vest for pool or beach swimming.

At the beach or lake

  • Only swim where lifeguards are visible and stay where you can see them.  If you can see them, they can see you.
  • Be aware of any signs posted on the beach regarding restricted areas and be sure to follow them.
  • Follow all lifeguard instructions.  If you see a lifeguard signaling you to come out of the water, do so immediately.
  • Stay out of the water if you notice strong winds or choppy water.
  • Keep an eye on your kids at all times – make sure they are close enough that you can swim to get them if need be.

Pool Safety

  • If you have your own backyard pool, make sure you lock the entrance to the pool and that it is fenced in, so the kids can’t access it.
  • If you have a small wading pool, after your children are finished playing, drain it, and store it away.  Don’t allow the pool to sit with water in it.
  • If you have an above-ground pool, secure and lock the steps or remove them completely when not in use.
  • Be aware of water depth, incline and any underwater obstructions before diving. Never dive in water less than nine feet deep.
  • If you have toys in your backyard pool, make sure you take them out, and put them away.  Children are very curious and can be drawn to getting to those toys.

No matter how diligent you may be, there is always the possibility of something going wrong.  When you feel your child is ready, enroll them in swim lessons.  Whether enjoying the pool or the beach, it just takes a matter of minutes for any type of situation to emerge. Be careful, be cautious, and watch your kids like a hawk!

Does your family have specific water safety rules?

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