YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – While the Northside Pool isn’t open just yet, several others in the area are. Backyard pools are also very popular this time of year. But unfortunately, mixing kids and water can sometimes result in tragedy. We talked with an injury prevention specialist about ways to keep your kids safe and cool in the pool this summer.
“It’s really important to understand that drowning can take just a minute and a lot of time it’s silent,” said Carrie Davis, an injury prevention specialist at Akron Children’s Hospital.
It’s nothing like what you see in the movies — no screaming, splashing or yelling for help. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drowning is the leading cause of death in children ages one to four.
“It’s not just pools, it could be at the beach, it could be at the lake, but also just in your bathtub. Kids can drown in as little as one inch of water,” Davis said.
The good news is, drowning is one of the most preventable causes of death.
“Even if your child has taken swimming lessons, which we highly recommend, it doesn’t make them drown-proof,” Davis said.
So, here are some tips from the experts at Akron Children’s Hospital. Always make sure an adult is within an arm’s length of a child while they swim around. The more eyes, the better.
“You can have multiple parents with you taking turns watching all of the kids. Obviously, we don’t need to be watching 25 kids at once, but that way, you’re not going to get burned out by just doing 15-minute shifts,” Davis said.
Davis also suggests getting certified in CPR, just in case. Plus, for those of you with a pool at home, make sure there’s a fence along all four sides.
“What we’ve seen statistically is that having a fence around all four sides reduces the risk of drowning by more than 70 percent, which is huge,” Davis said.
Also, get all of the toys out of the pool at the end of the day. Davis said this can greatly reduce the risk of accidental drownings by the littlest swimmers.
“So it’s not just something they can wander off and try to grab,” Davis said.