Swimming Pool Safety
Most of us are very pleased that summer is here and we can enjoy the pool. Children and adults alike can have many hours of fun in the pool provided that water safety rules are followed. If you are a pool owner, you are responsible for ensuring the safe use of your pool. Unfortunately, each year approximately 520 Canadians die in water related fatalities and it is important that you stay well informed about pool safety. Some key points to keep in mind are:
– Children should always have adult supervision and never be left alone in a pool. If you do have to leave the pool, take the children with you as it only takes a few seconds for a child to drown. Drowning is the second leading cause of accidental death in children age one to fourteen.
– Pools should have adequate barriers in place. For example: You should install four sided fencing and a self-closing, self-latching gate to keep children out if there is no adult to supervise.
– Running near the pool should not be permitted.
– Pool ladders and steps should be removed, if possible, when not in use.
– Diving is the leading sports related cause of spinal cord injuries. Over half of diving injuries and deaths involve alcohol and or drug use, and over 40% of spinal injuries are caused by careless diving in backyard pools. Most backyard pools are not deep enough for diving. When diving, always enter the water feet first.
– The best time to swim is daytime and you should stay out of the pool if it is raining or storming.
– Keep the pool area clear of toys and debris, including glass containers and glasses.
– Alcohol and drugs should not be used in and around the pool.
– You should have rescue equipment easily accessible by the pool, as well as a first aid kit and a working phone.
There is much more to read and learn about pool safety. By enrolling in pool safety courses available through most communities, you will go a long way towards ensuring that you and your loved ones have a safe and enjoyable pool experience.
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