Are you looking forward to summer? The summer months are hot, sticky, and often a little unbearable, which is why so many families head to their local swimming pool to cool down and have fun. It’s easy to assume a visit to the pool is a safe way to spend an afternoon, and if done correctly, it can be.
Some parents think accidents at the pool only happen to others and drowning in the pool is highly unlikely, however, they are wrong. Children more than any other age group are more likely to drown while swimming for a wide range of reasons. Perhaps they’re not being supervised properly, they’ve hurt themselves, they’re not strong swimmers, or no one notices they’re in trouble. We all want to keep our kids safe, and the best way to ensure everyone enjoys their day at the pool and no one gets into trouble is to follow some simple pool safety guidance.
Here are THREE swimming pool safety advice for parents from George Sink PA.
1. Know the signs of drowning
Do you know what a drowning person looks like? Believe it or not, it’s not as dramatic as it looks in the movies and on TV. In real life, the signs of drowning can simply look like kids messing around or just playing in the water. In short, it could be happening right in front of you, and you may not even realize. Make yourself familiar with the signs of drowning so you can remain vigilant and act if necessary:
- Their eyes are tightly closed
- They cannot respond to questions like, “Do you need help?”
- They are gasping and trying to catch their breath
- Their hair is covering their face or eyes
- Their head is at the same level as the water
- It looks as though they’re trying to climb a ladder
2. Teach your kids basic water safety
If your children know how to behave around water, then they’re less likely to get into difficulty and more likely to make better choices. Make sure they understand the following:
- Only enter the water and swim with an adult present in supervised areas
- Don’t get out of their depth
- No running around the pool
3. Make sure you’re supervising them at all times
If your children are playing near, in or around water then they should have your undivided attention. Accidents can happen and the situation can change in an instant. The following advice will help:
- Avoid distracting activities such as reading, listening to music, or playing on your phone
- Do NOT drink alcohol as this can impair your reaction time
- Enlist as many supervisors as possible.
- Brush up on your first aid skills
Knowing what to do if a child is injured or in danger around water could save their life. So, making sure you know how to perform CPR is imperative. Vaguely knowing what to do isn’t enough – consider attending a first aid or CPR course to ensure you have the necessary skills.