Lifestyle

Texas Water Safety: Protecting Your Child from Drowning

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For the most part, kids are drawn to water. You can float things in it. It’s shiny. And it’s fun to splash around in. Here in Texas, we look to water when the weather gets warm in order to help beat the heat. But water safety is absolutely necessary if we’re to prevent a child from drowning. Although a water-related accident can happen to anyone—even those who know how to swim—children need to be kept safe, in particular, due to their natural curiosity. Here are a few guidelines to protect your child from drowning.

General Safety Tips

Texas Water Safety: Protecting Your Child from Drowning

Photo: Pixabay

Learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and have any caregivers learn it as well. Enroll your child in swimming lessons or teach them to swim yourself. In addition, never leave your child unsupervised near water—be it as small as a washtub, or as big as a pool or natural body of water. At gatherings, ensure that there are people who know how to swim who are keeping an eye on the kids and won’t be distracted. Water floats or air-filled support mechanisms shouldn’t be relied on for your child’s safety. Also, avoid drinking alcohol while supervising your child around water, including swimming, boating, and fishing.

Home Pool and Spa Safety

Texas Water Safety: Protecting Your Child from Drowning

Photo: Pixabay

Install a fence at the appropriate height (at least 4 feet), which encloses the pool or spa area, keeping children safe. In this instance, avoid the type of fence that kids can easily climb. Install gates that are self-closing and self-latching. You could even go as far as installing an alarm to advise you when someone has accessed the pool gate. As well, remove above-ground pool ladders or stairs when the pool isn’t being used, and if you’re using an inflatable pool, empty it out following each use. Remove pool toys to ensure it doesn’t look appealing. With respect to spas, ensure the use of a rigid cover, and that it’s properly secured. Don’t allow your kids to play on or near drains, at which hair and body parts can get trapped, leading to injuring and possibly drowning. Be sure to keep emergency equipment nearby.

At Natural Bodies of Water

Texas Water Safety: Protecting Your Child from Drowning

Photo: Pixabay

If you’re boating, ensure that your family members are all wearing a life jacket. And if you’re on land, any family members going into the water who aren’t strong swimmers can benefit from the use of a life jacket as well. Following a depth and temperature check, remember to get in the water feet-first. Everyone should stay within designated swimming areas and pay close attention to posted warnings or lifeguards with respect to swimming conditions.