First, drowning is not a loud, dramatic event. The mouth slips below the water first, making shouts difficult. Drowning typically looks like quietly slipping under the water. It’s subtle. Pay close attention to your flock in the water.
Second, enroll your child in swim lessons when she is developmentally ready. There is no evidence to support infant swim classes prevent drowning. Be sure you are comfortable in the water so you can help any child in trouble.
Third, you must exercise constant supervision when your child is around water. This includes bathtubs and kiddie pools along with larger bodies of water. Designate a water watcher to engage only in watching the kids in the pool. No cell phones or alcohol for the water watcher. Little ones must be within arm’s reach in the water.
Finally, mind these additional tips for water safety:
- Lifeguard presence does not excuse you from watching your children in the water.
- Water wings are not a substitute for a life jacket. Use a U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket.
- Always swim with a buddy, no matter what level of swimming ability.
- Don’t dive where the depth is unknown. Inspect for hazards before diving.
- If you own a pool, you should have some basic first aid and CPR knowledge.
- There is no replacement for adult supervision.