Drowning is the leading cause of accidental death for children ages 1-4, and is the leading cause of death for children with autism.
Layers of protection are the key to preventing a water emergency from happening.
Lapses of supervision are inevitable. Designate a water water whenever there is water near. Most drowning accidents happen when you aren't expecting your children to be in or near the water.
Using high locks on all windows and doors that lead to the outside help prevent unsupervised access to areas where water may be present.
In addition to adding locks on windows and doors, alarms are another way to alert you if your child is attempting to gain access to areas where water may be present. Pool alarms are also another layer of protection.
It is recommended to have a 4 sided, isolating pool fence that also has a self latching, self closing gate. Mesh pool fences are non climbable and provide visibility to the water.
High quality swim lessons, with a focus on learning survival swim skills, decrease the risk of drowning by 88%. This is the only layer of protection that is portable.
Pet doors that lead to an area where water is present is a potentially dangerous situation. Lock or remove all pet doors when small children are in the home.
Toys and floats that are left in a pool when not in use can lure child towards the water. Remove all items from inside the pool. Remove any furniture or toys from around the pool area that could be used to climb on to gain access to the water.
Become educated on current drowning statistics and ways to prevent a water emergency. Too many parents have learned too late that they just didn't know. Drowning is silent, and happens in less than 30 seconds. It can happen to anyone.
A USCG approved life jacket is recommended when in or near open water (not in swimming pools). When boating, use properly fitted life jackets that are brightly colored.
Never encourage breath holding games with children. These games can increase the risk for drowning due to shallow water blackout.
No matter how experienced a swimmer is, no one is ever drown proof. Medical emergencies and unforeseen circumstances can all lead to a drowning accident.
Having the knowledge to know what to do in emergency situation can save precious time and help to prevent further injury.