Active supervision by the pool can prevent a tragedy
Most drownings happen quickly and silently – but often with people nearby. Susan Helms, director of Injury Prevention and Safe Kids Mid-South, strongly urges parents and adult caregivers to designate a "Water Watcher" by the pool, spa or any body of water. This responsible adult will assume the role of actively watching any child in or near the water. A short phone call, text message or other simple distraction is all it takes for a tragedy to happen.
Here are some other pool and spa tips:
- Put up a fence that is at least 4 feet high and surrounds all side of the pool or spa. The fence should have a gate that closes and latches itself.
- Use door, gate and pool alarms.
- Teach children not to play or swim near pool or spa drains.
- Use approved safety drain covers and back up devices.
- Always actively watch children in or near water.
- Watch them even if they know how to swim.
- Children who can’t swim or can’t swim well should be within your reach.
- Keep a phone near you- to use only if you need to call for help.
- If a child is missing, look in the pool or spa first.
- Both adults and children should learn to swim.
- Learn when to use U.S. Coast Guard approved life jackets.
- Learn how to use rescue equipment.
- Lear CPR.
DID YOU KNOW?
- Most children were being watched by an adult juts before they drowned.
- Drowning is one of the leading causes of death for children.
- Approximately 400 children age 14 and younger drown each year in pools or spas.
- Home swimming pools are the most common place for a child younger than 5 to drown