Water can be very powerful. Even rivers and lakes can have strong undertows. A current can cause you to drift out much farther than you intend to go.
Don’t try to swim against a current if caught in one. If you are ever caught in a current do not try to swim against the current; swim gradually out of the current, by swimming across it.
Check the surf conditions before you enter the water. Do not swim if warning flags are posted, if water levels are unusually high, or if water conditions are hazardous.
Always use approved personal flotation devices (life jackets). Always jump feet first into unknown bodies of water to avoid hitting your head on a shallow bottom.
To many, “summer” is practically synonymous with “swimming.” It’s a favorite summer/vacation activity of people of all ages.
No doubt it’s an activity which can provide countless hours of fun, whether in the wading pool on the driveway or splashing in the ocean, but it also provides substantial risks.
According to the National safety Council, nearly 3,000 people die by drowning each year and children age four and younger have the highest death rate due to drowning.
A child can drown in one inch of water. Most drowning and near-drowning incidents occur when a child falls into a pool or is left alone in the bathtub. Bathtubs, buckets, toilets, and hot tubs present drowning dangers as well. Never leave a child alone near water.
Water safety for children is vital and it is a good idea to learn childrens water safety and to enroll children over the age of three in swimming lessons taught by qualified instructors, such as American Red Cross certified programs.
However, even children who have successfully completed lessons or who are strong swimmers should always be supervised.
There are hidden dangers beyond the control of even strong swimmers and adults.
The drains of pools or hot tubs pose drowning risks caused by powerful suctioning or from clothing which can become tangled.
These risks can be mitigated by installing anti-entrapment drain covers or safety vacuum release systems in the pump. All damaged drain covers should be replaced immediately.
The American Red Cross is a good source of information for additional safety tips, CPR courses and for locating swimming lesson information for your local area.