Pool Safety 101 for Parents
With the Fourth of July weekend upon us, many families are planning pool parties or will be at the beach. Pool safety is something that I think can never be mentioned enough. In a post I wrote after Memorial Day weekend I mentioned that my son had a scare in the water. He got a little bit over his head and began to panic. I was right there, and scooped him up, but I saw just how quickly it could happen. Though he’s taken swim lessons for almost two years, and knows how to float and get horizontal in the pool, he couldn’t do it. The fear in his eyes is something I’ll never forget, and it happened so fast. Upsetting as it was, I was there to get him, and I don’t like to think of any other outcome.
So as we embark on a fun holiday weekend, I feel like it’s important to remind ourselves the rules of the pool … for kids and parents. Easy to remember are the ABCs of water safety. A=adult supervision is always needed. B=Barriers. Make sure you have multiple layers of protection around your pool or spa. C=Classes. Enroll your child in swim lessons and make sure as an adult you know CPR. Kelly Gaines, owner of Charlotte Aquatics and board member of SafeKids CharMeck offered up these tips for pool safety.
1. Never leave a child unattended in a pool, hot tub, or bathtub even for moment. Adult supervision is essential.
2. Always designate a responsible adult to serve as the “water watcher” – a supervisor whose sole responsibility is to constantly observe children in or near the water.
• Water Watcher should maintain continuous visual and auditory contact with children in or near the water.
• Water Watcher should not engage in distracting behaviors such as talking on the phone, preparing a meal or reading.
• Water Watcher should keep children who cannot swim within arm’s reach at all times.
3. Have a phone by the pool to dial 911 in an emergency.
To read the full list of safety suggestions, click over to read my earlier post. Here’s to a happy and safe weekend and summer!
And if you’re doing any boating, remember all children need to wear life jackets; and small children should have on a life jacket when playing by the water’s edge. When at the beach and swimming in the ocean, pay attention to any flags regarding rip tides. Swimmers should know what to do in case of rip currents (swim parallel to the shore until out of the current, then swim back to the shore).