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Summer months bring increased incidents of pool drownings. It’s a tragedy that knows no bounds, and it is completely preventable. Midland Vinyl Products is recognizing August as Drowning Impact Awareness Month.
Drowning can be completely avoided by following these important and lifesaving rules:
- Maintain constant adult supervision at all times. Constant adult supervision means eye-to-eye contact.
- Install an independent fence or barrier completely surrounding the pool. Fences should be at least 4 feet or preferably 5 feet high. Gates should be self-closing and self-latching, opening outward, away from the pool.
- Install additional “layers of protection” (e.g., safety covers, door alarms, motion-detection devices).
- Inspect and maintain barriers regularly.
- Keep items that can be used for climbing away from pool fences.
- All doors and windows leading to the pool should be secured and locked at all times.
- Assign an adult Water Watcher to supervise the pool/spa area, especially during social gatherings.
- Don’t rely on swimming lessons, life preservers or any other equipment to make a child “water safe.”
- Look in the pool area first if a child is missing.
- Mount rescue equipment by the pool, such as a lifesaving ring, shepherd’s hook and CPR sign.
- Have a phone near the pool. Post the 911 emergency telephone number on the phone along with the physical address of the pool.
- Never keep toys around or in a pool.
Developing and following a safety plan can save a life. Be sure to practice the ABCs of water safety: Adult supervision when children have access to water is critical. Barriers must be placed between children and water. CPR for adults, and swimming lessons for children at the appropriate age, can round out a family’s water-safety plan.