“Safety First” Tips For Water Fun
There may be few better ways to spend a hot day than at the beach, lake, water park or swimming pool but amid all the fun and games it is important to put safety first.
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.
Pioneers in swimming instruction and water safety, the nation’s YMCAs are celebrating 100 years of group swimming instruction to children and adults.
The YMCA offers these tips to help keep you and your loved ones safe in and around the water during the summer and at any time of year:
- Make sure children are supervised by an adult at all times.
- No one, not even adults, should ever swim alone.
- Be prepared in an emergency by learning lifesaving, first aid and CPR techniques.
- Always have a stocked first aid kit, phone, emergency numbers and sunscreen close at hand.
- Follow the posted rules in any water environment.
- Backyard pools should have posted rules, ring buoy and security fences with self-closing gates and childproof locks.
- 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.
- Children should use U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets.
- Avoid inflatable toys including armbands or “swimming”-they can be dangerous, giving a false sense of confidence.
And finally, everyone should learn swimming and basic water safety skills.
The YMCA offers swimming classes for all ages and levels.
- Approximately 830 children ages 14 and under drown every year. Drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional death in children ages 1 to 4 years and ages 10 to 14 years. For those less than 1 year old, drowning is the third leading cause of death
- An average of about 3,600 injuries a year occur to children due to a near-drowning incident.
- More than half of drownings among infants occur in bathtubs.
Where and when:
- Most infants under the age of 1 drown in bathtubs. Other drownings in this age group tend to occur in toilets and buckets.
- Most childhood drownings in pools occur in the child’s home pool. About one-third of these drownings occur in pools at the homes of friends, neighbors, or relatives.
- Most drownings and near-drownings occur during late spring and summer (May through August).
- More fatal drownings occur in the South and West.
- More fatal drownings occur in rural areas than suburban or urban areas.
- The majority of children who drown in swimming pools are between the ages of 1 to 4.
- Children ages 4 and under are more likely to drown than other age groups and account for most home drownings.
- Boys are two times more likely to drown than girls.
- African-American children ages 5 to 14 are three times more likely to drown than white children.
- Non swimming pool drownings are more common among low-income children.
A MAN and a woman have been arrested after a five-year-old boy drowned in a water park.
Charlie Dunn, from Tamworth, Staffordshire, died following an incident at Bosworth Water Park, near Hinckley, Leics., on July 23.
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