Florida leads the country in drowning deaths of children ages 1-4 years of age with summer being the most dangerous time of the year. Drowning is quick and can happen during the time it takes to pour a cup of coffee, unload the dishwasher or let the dog out.
According to the National Safety Council, statistics point to drowning as a leading cause of death for young children – mostly due to children falling into a pool or being left alone in the bathtub. Even buckets can pose a threat.
According to the Florida Department of Children and Families, there were a total of 88 reported drownings in Florida in the year 2018. Drowning is preventable and supervision, pool barriers and emergency preparedness are the best way to prevent it from happening.
Following are a few water safety precautions:
- Never leave your child alone; if you have to leave, take your child with you
- Find age-appropriate swim lessons for your child, but keep in mind that lessons do not make your child “drown-proof”
- Lifeguards aren’t babysitters; always keep your eyes on your child
- Don’t let children play around drains and suction fittings
- Never consume alcohol when operating a boat, and always make sure everyone is wearing U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets
- Don’t underestimate the power of water; even rivers and lakes can have undertows
- Always have a first aid kit and emergency contacts handy
- Get training in CPR
- If a child is missing, check the water first
For more information regarding drowning prevention visit http://www.watersmartfl.com/