Summertime means swimming time! But when you’re dealing with kids, there are sneaky water hazards everywhere – from around your house and at the swimming pool, to at the beach and around open water. That’s why it’s important for parents to know basic water safety so that every encounter their children have with water is a safe one. Here are our top 8 water safety tips:
Tip #1: Don’t rely on flotation devices
Flotation devices are not meant to preserve lives, so don’t let them give you a sense of security and never rely on them. They can be used to help but never can replace active supervision. The only safe flotation device is life jacket which is well-fitted and Coast Guard approved. Keep all inflatable floating toys away from your swimming pool when finished using it to avoid enticing unsupervised kids into the water.
Tip #2: Ignore your phone
Phones can be a distraction for your active parental supervision on your child, but can also be an important life-saving tool. Silence your phone, but keep it charged and within arms reach in case of emergencies
Tip #3: Never take your eyes off kids who are in or around water
Parents should always give their full attention to kids while swimming, regardless of their age. It’s also recommended to stay within touching distance for non-experienced swimmers.
Tip #4: Enroll your children in swimming lessons
Age four is a good time to help your kids to start swimming lessons. And make sure you’re a competent swimmer as well!
Tip #5: Pair up your child with a buddy
Teaching your kids to be mutually accountable for each other’s location at all times gives a little bit of extra safety protection.
Tip #6: Designate an adult water watcher as backup
Parental supervision can be distracting in events like summer parties or barbeques. Have a few designated water watchers take turns being on active adult supervision for kids playing in or around bodies of water.
Tip #7: Educate your child to follow rules in or around water
Teach kids to restrain from potentially dangerous games, running, pushing and pulling other kids underwater, diving in the shallow end, and swimming without adult supervision.
Tip #8: Learn CPR
With CPR and first aid skills, parents can save their child’s life while waiting for the ambulance to arrive. Be prepared and enroll yourself in a course.