Whether you have a pool in your own backyard, swim at the local beach or invite a group of buddies to the neighborhood pool, having a swimming party is a blast! Kids love to get together with their friends and show off their cannon balls, belly flops (why though?!) and handstand skills. Parents love to tire out their kids and host an unforgettable party. There’s just nothing quite like laying by the pool or cooling off in the cold water on a hot day.
But, as a swim school focused on water safety, we’ve got to remind you that pools and parties aren’t without risk. In fact, drowning while surrounded by people happens quickly and often silently. The statistics are scary – the CDC estimates that drowning is the number one cause of unintentional death in kids aged 1 to 4, and most of these deaths occur in swimming pools. Yikes.
So how do you make sure your pool party is safe for everyone attending? Let’s review the factors that increase drownings and accidental injuries according to the CDC.
- Not being able to swim.
- Missing or ineffective barriers or fences around the water
- Lack of close supervision
- Not wearing life jackets
- Using alcohol or other medications
Now we know what the risk factors are, but how do we make sure to address these risks and make our pools as safe as possible? Let’s see what the CDC recommends:
- Learn basic swim skills and water safety skills
- Keep pools enclosed with a fence or barrier
- Supervise closely (at SwimWest, we recommend designating a Water Watcher)
- Wear a life jacket
- Learn CPR
- Know the risks of natural bodies of water
- Use a buddy system
- Be careful if you have certain medical conditions
- Consider the effects of medications
- Do not hold your breath too long