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DuPage Health Department Provides Safety Tips To Enjoy Pools and Water Parks

Tue July 12, 2016

Swimming is among the most popular sports activities in the United States and enjoyed by DuPage County families throughout the year, at aquatic centers, pools, splash pads, water parks and open bodies of water.

Yet, drowning is a leading cause of injury death for young children ages 1 to 14, and three children die every day as a result of drowning. In fact, drowning kills more children 1-4 than anything else except birth defects.

Thankfully, parents can play a key role in protecting the children they love from drowning. The DuPage County Health Departments wants to remind residents that escaping the summer heat by swimming with friends and family, there are some very simple safety tips they could follow to ensure their days in the sun are both fun and safe:

·         Know the Basics: Everyone should know the basics of swimming (floating, moving through the water)

·         How, Where and Who?: Teach your children how to swim.  Swimmers should swim in designated areas, near lifeguards and with other people.

·         Constant Adult Supervision: Actively supervise children and non-swimmers around the water, even when lifeguards are present. Don't just drop kids off. Avoid distracting activities such as checking email or social media.

·         Be Prepared for Emergencies: Parents should learn CPR and other life-saving skills so they can help in the event of an emergency.

·         Avoid entrapment. Suction from a pool or spa drain can be so powerful that it can trap a child or adult underwater. Do not use a pool or spa if there are broken or missing drain covers. Ask your pool operator if your pool or spa drains are compliant with Federal Pool and Spa Safety Regulations.

·         Wear a Life Jacket :Adults and kids should always wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket while boating. Non-Swimmers and inexperienced swimmers should also wear a life jacket at all times when in and around the water. Inflatable toys can be fun, but are not a substitute for U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets.

·         Avoid Swallowing Water: Don't swallow swimming pool water. Try your best to avoid getting pool water in your mouth.

·         Stay out of the Water When sick: Please don't swim when you have diarrhea. You can spread germs into the water and make other people sick. Parents should take their children to the bathroom often while at the swimming pool. Don't change diapers at poolside. Germs can spread to surfaces and objects around the pool and spread illnesses.

·         Bathe Before Entering Pool: You can protect others by being aware that germs on your body end up in the water. Make sure children bathe and are clean before entering the pool.

·         Make Sure The Water is Safe For Swimming. If the pool is cloudy and you can't see the bottom drain; talk to the pool operator, the chemical levels might not be safe to swim.

·         Look in the Pool First: There are about 300 drowning deaths of children younger than 5 each year in swimming pools. Most of the victims had been missing for 5 minutes or less when they were found. Precious time is often wasted looking for missing children anywhere but in the pool. Since every second counts, always look for a missing child in the pool or spa first

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