Water Safety for Kids
As an adult you don’t think about water safety for kids as it may have been instilled in you as a child and it is second nature to you. I live in Durban. We (prior to March 2020) went to the beach a lot. We have a pool at home. I have had to rescue my own child from the pool quite a few times. You take your eye off them for a moment and they can fall in (he was at the crawling stage and we now have a pool cover).
What is water safety?
This is the ‘procedures, precautions and policies associated with safety in, on, and around bodies of water, where there is a risk of injury or drowning’.
Drowning is silent – the child may not kick and scream. It happens very quickly and as they are small they don’t know how to wave for assistants or to try stay calm.
A basic water safety rule, to install in children, is never swim alone, or enter the pool or pool area alone. Teach them to always swim in pairs and, when small, only swim when an adult is watching them.
Water Safety Tips:
- Swim in pairs
- Enter pool feet first
- Supervise children when swimming
- Stay within designated swimming areas at the beach
- Ensure pool nets/covers are used when the pool is not in use
- Avoid alcohol when swimming
- If using boats etc. ensure life vests are used
- Don’t leave doors/access to swimming areas, open when small children are around
- Learn CPR
It is suggested that children attend swimming lessons as young as possible to teach, not necessarily swimming, but what to do if they fall into the pool/water.
It is also suggested that a pool fence should be around a pool at least 4 feet high, with self-closing and self-latching gates.
When you go on holiday, please remain virulent when children are swimming. I have seen it so many times, parents are relaxed and don’t watch their children in the hotel/resort pools.
Children love swimming parties in summer. But with this comes a risk. To keep your party safe with happy memories, why not hire a trained lifeguard? This leaves the adults to talk and the lifeguard can concentrate on the children’s safety. South African Lifeguard Co is the biggest provider of private lifeguards in South Africa – check out their website http://salifeguards.co.za to have happy memories of your function.