It’s summer and the heat is driving everyone – including small children – into the water.
Enjoying time at swimming pools, rivers, lakes, and the ocean can be a healthy and fun part of our lives. However, there is a risk of drowning associated with enjoying leisure time near the water.
Drowning is one of the leading causes of death, especially for young children.
Drownings are a leading cause of injury or death for young children ages one to 14, and three children die every day as a result of drowning. In fact, drowning kills more children ages one to four than anything else except birth defects. The increase has led the Los Angeles County Fire Department, who are usually the first responders to such fatalities, to issue the following safety guidelines:
— never allow children alone in the water, and make sure an adult is present;
— make sure that the pool area is secure when not in use;
— keep toys out of the pool area when it is not being used;
— make sure approved flotation devices are available near the pool — many such devices are merely toys;
— never dive into an above-ground pool; know the depth of the water before attempting a dive;
— keep a phone outside near the pool, and do not leave children unattended to talk on the phone;
– if a child or an adult is in trouble in a pool— don’t panic, yell for help;
— get the person out of the pool immediately;
— call 911 immediately;
— begin CPR if necessary, and if you are not trained in CPR, follow telephone instructions from a fire department dispatcher before firefighters arrive.
– if you can, take a CPR class and if you are the parent of an infant take the special CPR for infants class.