Pools - Keeping Kids Safe  

by Pool Builders on 11-06-2011 in Articles

Keeping their kids safe is on the mind of every parent, especially if there is a swimming pool in their yard or close by. There are many steps that can be taken to keep youngsters safer around bodies of water, including teaching them to swim and creating barriers that would prevent them from wandering into the water unattended. Here are some things to think about regarding children's safety around pools:

- Adults in charge: The adults who are in charge of monitoring babies, toddlers, and non-swimming children should be constantly vigilant. If a party is going on, one person should be designated to watch the kids at all time. This person can be the designated watcher for a half hour and then switch with another adult. During their watch, there should be absolutely no distractions such as drinking alcohol, talking on the phone, working in the yard, sweeping the patio, reading, or chatting. It only takes a minute for drowning to occur. It's also important that these informal lifeguards know how to swim themselves.

- Rules for toys and playtime: Some toys should go in the water while others should not. Bikes, tricycles, skateboards, or pogo sticks should not be ridden near the edge, lest the kids accidentally ride or hop in. Nothing electrical should be used anywhere near the water, or severe catastrophe could occur. No running should be allowed around the edge, as slipping and cracking heads open is a common mishap. Toys not being played with such as blow-up rafts or foam noodles must be put away when not being used.

- Fences: Many municipalities regulate that all swimming pools and spas have fences built around them. A parent may think that they'll always monitor his or her youngster, but accidents happen. Kids have been known to go out doggy doors or slip out while the patio door's ajar in order to go into the water. Even grandparents or childless homeowners have to obey these regulations if the local city officials say so. This is actually smart because these individuals without kids never know when a grandchild or neighbor child will wander into their yard.

- Swimming lessons: One of the best ways to protect youngsters from the hazards of drowning is by enrolling them in swim lessons. These lessons can teach everything from the basics to advanced perfection of strokes and diving. In the early states, classes often include parents so that everyone becomes familiar with floating, kicking, dog paddling, and practicing together. Sometimes children are afraid of the water, which can be challenging because they may cry hysterically. Other times, they have no fear and this is perhaps even more dangerous, though not as hard on the ears as the crying. One summer of lessons isn't enough, either. Parents or guardians should sign their tots up every summer until true competence is achieved.

In order to keep children safe around the pool, parents have to take charge. They can do this by watching young swimmers at all times, monitoring toys and horseplay, building a fence around the pools and spas, and enrolling their youngsters in swim lessons.

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