As we head into July 4th weekend, don’t forget boat and water safety. Across the country, many children are headed to beaches, rivers, lakes to go boating or use watercraft with friends and family. Many times, we focus on pool safety (also super important!) and don’t think of teaching our children important things about boat and water safety. Safety precautions need to be taken around all water environments. According to the CDC, 1/2 of all drowning incidents occur in natural water settings like lakes, rivers or oceans. And almost 75% of people killed in boating accidents die as a result of drowning.
Here are some steps parents can be taking to keep their children safer in the water this summer:
1. Make sure your children know how to properly wear a life jacket. Always have children under 12 wear a life jacket at all times when boating or using personal watercraft.
2. Teach your child the “throw don’t go” rescue method. Instead of entering the water to help a struggling person, teach your child to throw in a rope, reach with a stick, paddle or other object to pull the person in.
3. When on beaches, be aware of tides or currents oceans or beaches may have.
4. If your family is canoeing, kayaking or in a paddle boat, be sure your child is in a life jacket and knows what to do if the boat flips.
5. If your child is playing near a natural body of water (or any body of water) and accidentally falls in, teach your child to roll over on his or her back and float until help arrives if getting out of the water is not possible.
6. Never use flotation devices or water wings to keep your child safe in the water. Rely on your direct supervision.
7. Learn the signs of drowning or struggling and go over, as a family, what to do in these situations.
8. Swimming lessons are a great way to build your child’s confidence in the water and can be an additional safety resource. You can find swim schools that are a member of the United States Swim School Association by visiting : www.usswimschools.org.
Happy Summer & Stay Safe
Info derived from tips provided by: www.usswimschools.org
This is not a sponsored or compensated post.
Rely on your direct supervision.