With weather warming up, residents across California will soon be taking to swimming pools in greater numbers. But whether swimming takes place in your own backyard, at a community pool, in the ocean, or some other body of water, safety always needs to be stressed. With an estimated 3,000 child drowning fatalities taking place on an annual basis, the threat should not be underestimated. Therefore, please consider some valuable safety tips centered around backyard pools as provided in a new report out of Austin, Minnesota.
If you have young children, you have to take the steps necessary to limit their access to the pool when adults are not around. On doors that lead out to the pool, it’s imperative that you get alarms installed so that you’ll be alerted if your kid attempts to exit the home. Alarms can be placed on the windows as well.
You should also invest in a fence that encloses the pool completely. And the taller the better. Five feet would be a reasonable height. And when you do install a fence, never prop open the gate for easy access. If you also have a spa on your property, make sure it’s equipped with a safety cover that only you can unlock.
There are also certain things you should have on hand that can come in handy in the event of an emergency. A cordless phone programmed with the numbers of emergency responders can help you seek help immediately in the event of a drowning incident. Another thing that could mitigate the danger is having a readily accessible first aid kit and CPR instructions displayed somewhere out by the pool. Various rescue gear should be on hand as well so that you can pull a drowning child out of the water quickly.
By the same token, there are certain things that should never have a place poolside. Toys, even pool toys, should be stored someplace else when they’re not in use. That way, the child won’t be tempted to head out to the pool to retrieve the toy. You should also remove furniture from outside the pool fence; children might seek to climb it to gain access to the pool.
You can prepare yourself to act in an emergency by submitting to a CPR course and basic lifeguard training. When your children are old enough, have them take swimming lessons, and supplement that teaching with your own instructions about the importance of safety. If you hire a babysitter at any point, explain to them the rules of the pool and the importance of supervision.
Finally, if you can’t find your child, check the pool first, and to further limit the danger, invest in an additional alarm that triggers whenever the surface of the pool is broken.