Depending on where you’re swimming (pool, beach, lakes, rivers etc.) it’s important to know tips and considerations for swimming safety. Let us take you through some of the most important pool safety tips when it comes to your family and the water.
Why is Pool Safety Important?
There’s no doubt that swimming can be a lot of fun! But with most fun activities there’s also an element of risk. Swimming can also be dangerous if the right rules aren’t in place. The reason pool safety is so important is to make sure everybody gets the most fun out of swimming while reducing the amount of risk.
How Long Does it Take for a Child to Drown?
Pool safety can help to prevent drowning. Since according to the World Health Organization, drowning is the 3rd leading cause of unintentional injury death worldwide. It only takes 20-60 seconds for a person to struggle on the water’s surface before being fully submerged under the water. This is why drowning happens so quickly, and the person who drowns often goes unnoticed.
Children from the ages of 1-4 are at the highest risk of drowning, which is why parents should always watch their kids when they’re near or in the water. This is another reason swimming lessons are a life skill that parents should invest in for their children.
Outside of drowning, there are other reasons pool safety is important. If pool safety isn’t prioritized than swimmers can also be at risk of other injuries. Water on deck can cause people to slip and fall. This is why nobody should run near or on pool floors because if they slip and fall in the pool they can also drown.
Lastly, if owners of a pool do not prioritize pool safety they can face penalties. Strict laws are required for pool safety and it is expected that every pool owner must obey the law. Different offenses will have different fines associated, ranging from hundreds of dollars to thousands of dollars.
What are Safety Rules in the Swimming Pool:
Learning about these pool safety tips is important, the next step is implementing them. Here are the top safety tips in the swimming pool that you should keep in mind:
Pool Safety Tip 1: Never Leave Your Children Alone Near Water
Playing in the water is great fun for children and there are many benefits to it as well, but pool safety is important too. Despite this, water still presents many dangers as drowning can occur in less than an inch of water. This makes household water sources like bathtubs, sinks, and even pails a source of danger. Meaning, this goes beyond pool safety tips, this is about water safety. In order to prevent emergencies or accidents, install preventative measures and practice water safe actions. Never leave your child unattended near water, no matter how insignificant the amount may seem to you! Not even for a few seconds. As far as pool safety tips go, this is number one.
Pools, hot tubs, ponds and the like can become dangerous in an instant. Make sure there is a fence around the body of water in question. Always have a locking mechanism on the fence of home pools, and if able, install an alarm system on entrances/doors leading to the water. Always cover hot-tubs and empty small wading pools when they are not in use.
Pool Safety Tip 2: Be Prepared For an Emergency
Another item on our pool safety tips list is preparing for an emergency in advance. Regardless of how well you childproof your home, there is always a chance that something may not go as planned. To help keep your loved ones safe, it is smart to:
- Learn First Aid Procedures, Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation, and choking procedures.
- Assemble a first aid kit with instructions.
Keep important numbers near your primary phone such as poison control, your pediatrician, your work and cell phone numbers, and a neighbor or nearby relative.
Teach your children emergency procedures as well! As soon as they are old enough to know their own name and address, teach them to dial 9-1-1 to call for help in case of an emergency.
Check out your local First Aid Training Providers for upcoming learning opportunities!
Pool Safety Tip 3: Set Up Pool or Water Rules
Ensuring that your children are aware of the rules when it comes to swimming serves as a lifelong safety measure. Understanding the risks that come along with water whether it’s your backyard pool, the lake by the cottage, or the beach while you’re on vacation, act as a means by which you can prevent as many unsafe situations as you can. The following are a few rules that you should always enforce with your whole family:
- Always swim with a buddy.
- Wear a lifejacket regardless of swimming ability, especially on open water.
- Thunder or lightning? Don’t go in or near any body of water!
- Always have an adult check the ice thickness before you venture out on it. Never walk on frozen water alone, or without the express permission of an adult that knows how to check ice thickness and safety.
- Don’t swim out too far in lakes or large bodies of water.
Check out KidsHealth.org for a detailed outline of rules to teach your children when it comes to swimming!
Pool Safety Tip 4: Take Swimming Lessons
Another important consideration of our pool safety tips list is to keep in mind that swimming lessons teach lifesaving and lifelong skill! Learning how to swim with appropriate techniques ensures ultimate efficiency and stamina. The endurance gained through swimming is good for long-distance swimming, prolonged treading, and being an overall stronger swimmer. Therefore taking lessons is one of the ultimate and most long-term rewarding safety measures that can be taken in order to prevent drownings and water-related accidents. Many children that engage in swimming lessons early also develop a lifelong love for the activity which they can develop into a competitive sport or even a career. With our passion for swimming lessons, water safety and our #1MillionSwimmers campaign, we strongly believe children need to learn this lifesaving skill. Check out AquaMobile’s lesson packages and book an instructor in your area today!
Pool Safety Tip 5: Lock Up Chemicals
We all know that many household products are potentially poisonous to children if swallowed. When childproofing our homes we take care to install locks and cabinet guards, store cleaners and detergents in safe spaces. The chemicals used to treat the swimming pool are no different, if not more dangerous. Practice extra precautionary measures when deciding where to store your chemicals, making sure that they are in a cool dry location, away from direct sunlight or sources of heat, and are in airtight containers to avoid cross-contamination.
Consider purchasing personal protective gear for yourself such as safety goggles, thick elbow-length rubber gloves, an apron, and a face mask. Install locks on all storage spaces used for these chemicals, and educate your children on the dangers that they pose.
If an accident occurs despite all of your precautions, immediately contact Emergency Medical Services if necessary, and the Poison Control Centre. Experts are on-call to help guide you to the most appropriate first aid and the next step for treatment while you wait for paramedics to arrive.
Pool Safety Tip 6: Swim With a Friend
It’s super important to always swim with a friend! Even great swimmers can get into trouble in the water. They can call for help, throw a buoyant aid, or even perform a rescue if they are qualified to do so. Regardless of age, swimming ability, or location, one should always swim with at least one other person present.
Pool Safety Tip 7: Stay Within Reach of Your Children
Toddlers and young children are a high-risk age group, especially around water. Because of this, a child should always be within arms reach of a parent/guardian. Regardless of swimming ability, floatation devices, or visibility from a distance. A guardian should be a trusted adult individual who has a good swimming ability and understands the importance of their role.
Pool Safety Tip 8: Wear a Personal Floatation Device
Personal floatation devices or PFD’s are an important part of swimming safety. Visit your local-sport, specialty swim gear or outdoor equipment store to have a specialist help you find a PFD that fits you and your child properly. Look for a comfortable and snug fit that is not too tight, with the right buoyancy equivalent for the weight of the person wearing it. This is generally a sign that the PFD is effective.
Life jackets and PFDs also have an expiry date; something a lot of people do not know. Test your PFDs every season to make sure that they are safe for use and can be depended upon when needed.
Pool Safety Tip 9: Check Water Chemistry Regularly
Optimal water chemistry matches the pH levels of our skin and eyes. This is what ensures that our eyes and skin do not become irritated in the water. Run tests on a regular basis in order to make sure your water chemistry is always balanced. Using a test kit such as a Taylor Test Kit, assess the pH, total alkalinity, and calcium hardness. Your chemicals should read as follows: pH: 7.2-7.6; Alkalinity: 80-120 ppm; Calcium hardness: 180-220 ppm.
You should take both natural and unnatural environmental factors into consideration when deciding the frequency of water chemistry checks. For example, rain, extreme heat/sun, and bather load. Each factor might play a role in chemical imbalances, this can help you plan ahead to keep pH levels balanced.
Pool Safety Tip 10: Having a Party? Hire a Lifeguard!
Our last suggestion on our list of pool safety tips is to hire a Lifeguard. Lifeguards are trained in techniques for scanning water, implementing water safety, and in water rescue. Stationing a lifeguard on duty whether it’s a backyard pool party or a cottage get-away provides peace of mind. AquaMobile provides lifeguards for hire! Having a pool party or an event? Make sure to book a lifeguard now to ensure everyone in the water is as safe as can be.
How do I protect my Kids from the Pool?
A few ways that you can protect your kids from the pool is by using a pool cover. These are especially great because they’re not just a barrier near the pool but actually cover the entire pool. Another option that can protect your kids from the pool is to use a gate with a latch. That way your kids can’t sneak into the pool or fall in accidentally.
Do you know of any life-saving pool safety tips that we didn’t mention? Comment below, we’d love to hear from you!