The first day of summer is here! Schools just let out, the temperatures are rising, and we’re getting more hours of sunlight in the day. It’s that time of year to hit the pool! Before you dive in, however, take a minute to read our pool safety tips so that you’re well-prepared in case of an emergency.
Do not leave children unsupervised in or near the water
Before you head out to the pool, whether it be open to the public or in your backyard, make sure that at least one responsible adult is looking after the kids to make sure they’re safe. This is especially important for children that do not know how to swim yet. If a child who doesn’t know how to swim tries to get in the water without a proper flotation device, an adult needs to be on standby to quickly interfere when needed.
Regardless of the age and swimming ability of your child, it’s essential for them to be watched throughout the duration of their stay at the pool as accidents can happen.
Learn to perform CPR in case of an emergency
Nobody likes to think about the possibility of a friend or family member needing CPR, but learning how to handle a situation that requires it can help to provide peace of mind. You can get a CPR certification through in-person classes for less than $100, or simply take online courses for free.
It is especially important to know CPR if you have a pool of your own due to the fact that there isn’t a lifeguard readily available like there is at public pools.
Ensure that any child in the water knows how to swim. If not, equip them with a floating device
If your child or any children that you’re supervising cannot swim, provide them with a flotation device if they want to get in the pool. Some children are more eager to hop in the pool than others, but any child can benefit from swimming lessons taught either by a family member or a professional at a group swimming class depending on your budget.
The best way to teach your child how to swim varies depending on their age and overall interest in the activity, but an adult should be in the water with the child at all times until they are old enough and experienced enough to brave the pool on their own.
Keep in mind that pool toys such as noodles and inner tubes do not provide adequate support for your child; flotation devices that are Coast Guard approved should be provided to ensure their safety.
Teach children to stay away from drains and other openings
Children will be safer in the water if they are taught to avoid drains and filters. Old or improperly managed drain covers create a strong circulation in the water that can cause injury or even death in the event that one becomes blocked by a body part.
The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act (VGB Act) was enacted in 2007 to ensure that public pools and spas are equipped with anti-entrapment drain covers and safety devices; however, children should still stay away from drains in case the pool has not been properly inspected by a professional.
Make sure you review these pool safety tips with your child before they dive in this summer to ensure that their trip to the pool is as fun and relaxing as possible!
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