Tips for Preventing Swimming Pool Accidents
The summer is in full swing, and all over New York people are taking advantage of the hot weather and long days. Community swimming pools are open, and many backyards are alive with the sounds of laughter and splashing. As much fun as pools are, they can also be a hazard, as swimming pool accidents are a leading cause of death, especially for young children. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in the years between 2005 and 2014, there were roughly 3,536 unintentional drowning deaths in America. That means about 10 people died each day, and these are just non-boating related drownings. Tragically, about one-fifth of all these drownings are children under 14 years of age.
The personal injury attorneys of the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP want you to be safe this summer. So, if you have a swimming pool at your home, there are some basic precautions that you should take in order to make sure everyone can enjoy safely.
Keep Your Pool Secure
You cannot always control who goes on your property. You can tell neighborhood children not to sneak into your yard, you can preach to toddlers all day long about the dangers of swimming alone, and you can even post huge signs. But ultimately, children are going to be attracted to pools. It is your responsibility to put up a barrier to keep people out when the pool is not in use in order to prevent fatal pool drownings. The easiest and most cost effective way to do this is to fence the pool area. Your fence should have a gate that is solid and can be locked and latched, so as to keep unwanted visitors out. Keep large objects away, as children can use them as steps to climb over a fence.
Insist on Adult Supervision
It only takes a second to lose sight of a child playing in or around a pool. When children are playing in or around a pool, you, as the homeowner, must insist that there is a grownup nearby, supervising pool activities. A child who jumps or dives into a pool can easily hit his or her head, become unconscious, and drown within a moment’s inattention. Having an observant grownup nearby can reduce any likelihood of problems.
Keep Rough Play to a Minimum
Obviously, it will be almost impossible to eliminate all roughhousing. Kids will be kids. However, pools really are not a safe place for wrestling, running, or horseplay. Pool decks are wet and slippery, and children running on these surfaces can fall and fracture bones and suffer serious back or head injuries. Drownings often happen because a child gets knocked out in the pool. This can become deadly in seconds.
Know Everyone’s Limitations
If a child cannot swim or is a weak swimmer, deal with it. Make sure the child stays in a shallow part of the pool. Provide floaters and other supports. Ultimately, however, the best prevention is to make sure children get early and professional swimming instruction. Most YMCAs offer affordable swimming lessons, and some communities offer instruction for free.
Make sure everyone stays hydrated because it can be easy to forget how thirsty you are when swimming. Also, be sure you have appropriate safety equipment on hand. This means life-saving flotation devices that can be thrown to a struggling swimmer in an emergency, a cell phone nearby, and plenty of water. Make sure someone knows CPR and basic first aid. All of these things will help you ensure a safe and fun summer for all.
Speak to a Long Island Personal Injury Attorney at the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe
At the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP, our accident lawyers are dedicated to protecting our community. If you or a loved one are seriously hurt or injured by someone’s negligence, call us today at(866) 895-0420 to schedule a free consultation.