Swimming Pool Injuries and Children
Swimming pool injuries are largely preventable when the proper safety precautions are in place. This is especially true when it comes to small children, but even adults can benefit from a little effort and common sense when it comes to poolside, whether aboveground or the conventional type.
Drowning is the second leading cause of accidental death for children below 14 years of age. But there are other injuries that can be prevented if you know why they occur. To design and implement effective safety protocols in and around a swimming pool whether at home or in public, it is important to know what factors can lead to swimming pool injury.
Can’t swim – the inability to keep afloat has never stopped a child from jumping in feet first anyway, so it may be a good idea to invest in some formal lessons. Studies show that lessons reduce the risk of children drowning by more than 80 percent.
No fences – children ALWAYS go where they’re not supposed to, so it’s a waste of breath to tell them to keep away from the pool when you or another adult is not around. Make it harder for them to disobey you by restricting their access. Put in a four-sided fence to isolate your pool.
Distraction – Children (and some adults, especially when they are inebriated) need to be closely watched at all times when they are in or around water. It doesn’t take long for a person to drown, and for children, it doesn’t need a lot of water either. A bucket of water is enough to drown a toddler. Don’t depend on the lifeguard; keep an eye peeled. There’s no other way.
Slippery conditions – Children run around, and when the ground is wet, it’s usually slippery. This is especially true for above ground swimming pools with an attached deck or platform. Lay down anti-slip flooring immediately around a pool.
Swimming pool injury is a very real possibility for children. Since it is usually next to impossible to keep them away from the water, the next best thing is to take preventive measures.