Children of all ages love the water. When you spend time with them in the backyard pool or at the lake, you are making memories together that will last a lifetime. Sadly, across the United States, child drownings are still a leading cause of injury and death. The risk is even higher in Arizona, a state ranked second in the nation for child drownings.
Below are some very important tips in helping keep you and your loved ones safe at all times while enjoying the water. Supervision is the best defense to drownings, but the tips below can also help.
- Make sure your pool or spa has an effective barrier, such as a fence to help guard against unauthorized access.
- Your pool or spa should have a barrier regardless of whether they are covered.
- Door and windows leading to the pool areas should be locked.
- Fence gates should have self-closing, self-latching mechanisms. Latches need to be out of reach of young children.
- Never leave your child unattended in or near a swimming pool, hot tub, spa, not even for a second.
- Keep toys, tricycles, and other children's play things away from the pool or spa.
- Don't consider your children to be "drownproof" because they have taken swimming lessons.
- Don't allow barriers, such as fences or walls, give you a false sense of security regarding your child's safety. There is No substitute for adult supervision.
- Learn how to administer CPR, mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, and other lifesaving techniques. To administer CPR correctly you must be properly trained.
- Know how to contact your local emergency medical services. Install a phone or keep a cordless phone in the pool or spa area. Post the emergency number in an easy to see place.
- Learn to swim and teach age appropriate children to swim.
Other Pool Safety Tips
- Do not allow children to play in or around the pool area.
- Mount life saving devices near the pool.
- Keep tables, chairs and ladders away from pool fences.
- Check placement of doggie doors for direct access to pool area.
- Post your local emergency number on the phone. Think about installing a phone near the pool area.
If you find a child in any source of water...
- Yell for help and pull the child out of the water.
- Call 9-1-1 or your local emergency number immediately!
- Begin CPR if you are trained.
- If you are not trained to administer CPR, follow the instructions from the 9-1-1 operator until help arrives.
With the weather on the rise, and summer break is in session for most children, it is very important that we mantain a safe communication with them regarding the rules of swimming. Pool drownings in Arizona happen more often than almost every other state in America. Let's be sure to stay aware of where our children are at all times when the pool gates are open.