Drowning is the leading cause of accidental death for young children, from ages 1 to 4. Every day, three children die as a result of drowning.
Sadly, children can drown in less than 3cm of water. That is why it is important that they are under constant supervision when in or near any water.
- Never leave children or babies in the bath unsupervised, even for a moment
- Never leave uncovered bowls or buckets of water around the home
- Paddling pools should be emptied and stored away when not in use
- Garden ponds should be filled in while children are small or securely fenced off. Take special care when visiting other people’s gardens.
The CDC recommends the following safety tips to keep your child safe and out of danger.
Learn life-saving skills. Everyone should know the basics of swimming (floating, moving through the water) and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
Fence it off. Install a four–sided isolation fence, with self–closing and self–latching gates, around backyard swimming pools. This can help keep children away from the area when they aren’t supposed to be swimming. Pool fences should completely separate the house and play area from the pool.
Make life jackets a “must.” Make sure kids wear life jackets in and around natural bodies of water, such as lakes or the ocean, even if they know how to swim. Life jackets can be used in and around pools for weaker swimmers too.
Be on the look out. When kids are in or near water (including bathtubs), closely supervise them at all times. Adults watching kids in or near water should avoid distracting activities like playing cards, reading books, talking on the phone, and using alcohol or drugs.