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Pool Safety

Child drowning is a silent death that alerts no one with splashes or yells for help, which means your attention must stay on the children. Never become distracted by a phone call or conversation. 300 children under the age of five drown in residential swimming pools -- 3,000 go to the hospital due to submersion injuries. In many drowning accidents, children had been missing for less than five minutes.

Good supervision means you are able to scan the whole area within 10 seconds and be able to reach pool within 20 seconds.

Even at parties, make sure you designate an adult to watch swimming children.

If a child is missing, and a pool is in the area, always check the pool first. Every second counts in preventing a drowning accident.

Don't allow young children to swim unsupervised just because they've had swimming lessons.

Flotation devices, flotation toys, and inflatable swimming aids are not babysitters, and they are not safety devices.

Keep multiple rescue devices such as life preservers within reach around pool.

Be sure a telephone is poolside with emergency numbers posted nearby.
Remove all toys when you leave pool. Floats, balls and other toys may attract children to the pool when it is unattended, and they may fall in.

If you own a pool, make sure you know infant and child CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation).
If you own a pool, your children should already be taking swimming lessons.
Adult supervision is key to preventing accidents.
Put multiple safety barriers between children and pool. This provides backup systems that will delay a child's effort to get near the pool when he/she is not being supervised. If you have multiple barriers, your child has to bypass all of them before reaching the pool. This should give you time to prevent  accidents.
Install a four-foot fence with a self-closing, self-latching gate that has a mechanism beyond a child's reach. The fence should completely separate the pool from the house and play area of the yard.

Pool covers are not just for keeping debris out, they can also be safety devices. Power safety covers are recommended for in-ground pools and will inhibit children from getting near the water.

Pool motion alarms, motion sensor alarms and gate alarms offer added precautions. All emit piercing sounds that alert you to anyone approaching or jumping into the pool. Remove all ladders and portable steps from above-ground pools when not in use.

For small wading pools, always empty pool of water after your children are done playing. Infants can drown in just a few inches of water.

Make sure the pool is in plain view from house. Remove any shrubs, vegetation or bushes that obstruct a clear view to the pool. Remove any chairs or ladders from the area to prevent children from climbing over any fence surrounding the pool. Tree limbs should be removed.


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