Kids Love the Water but Pool Safety Comes First
Hey, we don’t like to be the bearers of bad news, but it is important to remember that pool and spas–as wonderfully joyful and healing as they are–can also be dangerous to small children.
According to a recent article in the Santa Cruz Sentinel:
Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death in children ages 1 to 4 and ranks fifth among the leading causes of unintentional injury death for people of all ages.
Many of our customers in Santa Cruz County have kids, and kids love swimming pools. But even if you don’t have kids, it is important to remember that if kids can gain access to your pool or hot tub, that is an accident waiting to happen.
Pool areas need to be able to be secured completely to prevent tragedy.
A case in point, Good Morning America featured a story about a 6 year old boy who saved his cousins after they entered the family pool. The older boy had gone into the house for just a few minutes. All the adults were already inside, believing the baby gate was closed, allowing the children to play safely outdoors.
Unfortunately the baby gate was not shut. 21 month old twins along with the older boy’s little brother all got into the water. Less than 3 minutes passed from the time the big brother went inside until his return. His little brother was on the top step of the pool and he got him out of the water, and then he saw his twin cousins face down in the water. He pulled both toddlers out and began screaming for help.
One of the adults inside happened to be a first responder and began giving CPR while another called 9-1-1.
Thankfully this story has a happy ending: all the kids are safe and recovered fully. But these 2 families might not have been so lucky. The 6 year old did not know how to swim either, and in his efforts to help the younger kids, he could have been lost as well.
Please, keep your kids safe with these pool safety tips.
- Always watch kids when they are near a pool–even if you think all the gates are closed.
- Teach your kids how to swim early (it isn’t about training the next Michael Phelps, but who knows?)
- Have some basic tools that can help tools that can help save a child’s life–from the pool deck and from in the water
- Learn CPR
- Teach your kids to call for help right away.
- Look into the Santa Cruz Junior Lifeguard programs–for kids as young as 6 years old
- Learn to recognize the signs of a swimmer in distress
“Drowning is silent, and it happens in seconds. The last thing someone drowning wants to do is raise their arms because they’ll sink faster.” CDC Medical Epidemiologist Capt. Julie Gilchrist
Let your pool be a place of pure joy, that your kids and their friends love to be around!