Did you know…? May is National Water Safety Month. For many of us, it marks the start of prime pool season. Pools are meant to be enjoyed, so let’s keep the pool a fun and safe place by taking some easy steps.
- Always have an adult present when children are in the pool. This goes for ALL age groups! Drowning is the #1 cause of unintentional death for children aged one to four.
- Make sure the pool has a surrounding fence. Children learn quickly how to climb the side of an above-ground pool and may mistakenly walk into an in-ground pool. Make sure the fence has a self-closing and self-latching option. The latch should be high enough so that a young child can not reach it.
- Your children should know how to swim and have swimming lessons prior to getting in the pool without an adult in the pool as well.
- Never allow diving into the shallow end of a pool. Serious spinal cord injuries, permanent brain damage, and death may occur.
- Pool covers can be a barrier and help maintain safety, but you need to make sure the pool cover is stretched across the pool completely and anchored into the pool deck.
- Inspect pool drains and drain covers. These things can create underwater suction with a force great enough to trap even strong swimmers below the surface of the water.
- Keep pool chemicals out of the reach of children. Having them locked up is most preferable.
Remember, there is no single safety device or protective measure that will completely childproof your pool. Nearly 1000 children die each year by drowning, and most of those deaths occur in swimming pools. The good news is, by incorporating the few steps listed above, we can decrease any risks for accidental death by drowning.