According to the World Health Organization (WHO), age plays a key factor when it comes to drowning accidents. The highest rates of drowning deaths are from the age of one to four, followed by children from five to nine years old. In the southern part of USA, drowning is the number one killer amongst children between the ages of one to four, followed by kids ages five to fourteen. These accidents usually happen in a backyard swimming pool.
We are in the middle of the swimming season, and it is also the season with the highest number of accidents in the pool. When it comes to prevention, any safety recommendation, from continuous monitoring, rescue devices or educating children, can help to have a 100% safe time in the water.
The first thing is to understand that accidents don’t happen by chance. Accidents on beaches and pools are always preventable. Keep in mind that a gadget or any type of floatation device that promises 100% security measures does not exist, nor will replace the time needed to keep an eye on children in a swimming pool. The constant supervision of adults is vital, so remember, the responsibility for the safety of a small child will always fall on the adults.
1. Don’t Lose Sight of Your Children
Never turn your back on children while they are in the water. Under no circumstances should you lose sight of them while they are in the pool. It only takes 27 seconds for a child to drown if they don’t know how to swim. Serious consequences can occur in 3 to 5 minutes if not rescued immediately. If anyone thinks that drowning accidents do not happen in less than a foot of water, think again.
2. Remember the Maximum 10/20
The International Association for Child Safety recommends complying with the ’10/20 norm’. For every 10 seconds, you observe the minors in the pool, do not take more than 20 seconds to reach them in case of a drowning accident.
3. No Distractions
Something as simple as answering the phone or going to open the door is more than enough time for a child to drown. Avoid distractions by having another adult to help supervise the kids.
4. Safety Fence
The best way to avoid accidents in the pool when you are not present is to install a safety fence. A safety fence will make it difficult for children to jump, climb or sneak under by due to having a high fence that automatically closes. Since pool owners have begun to install safety fences, safety fences have helped reduce drowning accidents by 95 percent.
5. Teach Your Children to Swim
One of the most effective ways to avoid drowning is having your children take swimming lessons. Although some parents have their children, as young as one year of age, enroll in a swimming class, the American Association of Pediatrics recommends having your kids learn to swim from age four. Swimming is essential, but it doesn’t mean that you are free and easy. Children always require adult supervision regardless of how well they can swim.
6. Beware of the False Sense of Security
Floats, hoses, tables and other floating elements can give us a false sense of security. They are only of help, but they can never replace the protection constant supervision offers.
7. Do not Leave Anything in the Pool
Ensure that there are no toys near or inside a pool. Anything that can be played with can get a child’s attention and, eventually, a child may attempt to recover the item, which could include getting into the water to retrieve the toy.
8. Beware of Water Temperature
The so-called “digestion cut” happens when there is a large difference between the body and the water’s temperatures. The consequences of digestion cut can be devastating, such as loss of consciousness or even cardiac arrest. If you still want to enter the pool, do it gradually while the body adapts to the water temperature. Otherwise, get out of the swimming pool immediately.
9. In Case of an Accident: Know CPR
Are you thinking of having an oasis in your backyard? Do you go to a country club or the beach often? One of the immediate effects of drowning is lack of oxygen to the brain. Performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) helps a drowning victim from having irreversible brain injuries. So please, check your area for CPR courses. Many health centers offer them free of charge.
By complying with these security measures, we can reduce the risks of water accidents and have a healthy and safe summer for you and your family.
Our main concern at Platinum Pools is our customers. If you have any questions, contact us at 1.281.870.1600 (Houston), 1.409.898.4995 (Beaumont), or 1.361.575.0183 (Victoria). Our experts are ready to help.