Drowning is one of the top causes of unintentional death among children. It can happen in a matter of seconds and in very little water. Whether taking the kids to a pool, beach or anywhere else where there is water, it’s important to know how to avoid such an accident.
Know Where Water Accidents Happen
Pools get a lot of attention when it comes to drowning accidents. But they can also occur while at the beach or in a lake or pond. Bathtubs are a common area for small children to drown, especially when left unattended.
Know How Water Accidents Happen
A major cause of water-related accidents is a lack of supervision. Taking one’s eyes off a child for just a few seconds can allow the child to fall or willingly enter a body of water. Don’t let a lifeguard give you a sense of total security. Nobody will watch your child better than yourself. So, leave the phone or book at home when taking the kids swimming.
Parents should not allow their children to play with toys near a pool, especially if they aren’t around to watch them. Inflatable plastics are choking hazards. Homeowners and renters should keep gates that allow access to pools locked at all times.
Know Where Safety Equipment Is Located
If you are going to be around water, know where safety equipment is located in the event of an emergency.
For instance, if visiting a neighbor’s backyard pool ask about:
- life jackets;
- floating devices; or
- ropes that can be tossed into the water.
It’s also a good idea to have a pair of scissors in a first aid kit (kept at the pool or in the pool bag taken to other pools) nearby in the event a child’s hair or clothing gets stuck in a pool drain.
Keep a phone handy in case someone does fall into the water. Call 9-1-1 if there has been a drowning or any other type of water-related accident. And if the water accident is related to another’s negligence, get in touch with an attorney to discuss legal action to recover damages.