With the National Weather Service noting the U.S. set to experience higher-than-normal temperatures this spring it's inevitable that people will turn to swimming as a way to keep cool. And with that carefree escape from the heat comes certain safety risks. According to estimates from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 10 people die from drowning accidents each day, and 1 in 5 of those are children under the age of 14. Even if you don't own a pool, it's likely your child has a friend among the 22.93 million households that do (as of 2008's figures) , according to figures from Statista. You don't have to spend the entire spring and summer hanging on the deck, though. Just follow these three handy tips for proper pool safety:
"Approximately 10 people die per day from drowning accidents."
1. Lock it up
The easiest and most effective way to keep children safe around water? Control access to and from the pool, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. You do that by installing a fence around the pool - one that's at least four feet tall and has self-closing and self-latching gates. Many localmuniciplaities will require fences to be built around home pools. Some families go a step further and use door alarms. Similarly, you may want to install a window guard for those that overlook the pool Finally, it's a good idea to invest in a pool cover or at least a special underwater alarm.
2. Keep it clean
Pools don't pose a danger for only drowning. As the American Red Cross explained, chemicals in the pool can also affect your family's health. The Canadian Center for Occupational Health and Safety explained that chlorine, the primary cleaning agent for most pools, can prove corrosive if touched or consumed in excess and can lead to rashes and earaches. You always want to store chlorine in a cool, dry place, and if anyone handles it, he or she needs to wear gloves. The ARC said that you should test your pool with some frequency and ensure it's properly circulating in the pool as well.
3. Prepare your poolside
Proper supervision is only part of the equation for poolside safety. The CPSC advised that every home pool should also feature several pieces of safety equipment. Younger children need floatation devices, though these are only assistive devices and should not replace a supervising adult. Any safe must pool area must include a ring buoy and a rescue hook on a pole. Also, consider placing a first aid kit and cordless phone at or near the pool area. If your family has been trained in CPR, you can hang up a handy guide or reminder.
No matter how safe you are, accidents are bound to happen during a day lounging around the pool. That could include sunburns, strained muscles from swimming or assorted bumps and bruises. Fortunately, you can always take any family member to your nearest CareWell Urgent Care Center. With facilities spread out across the Eastern Seaboard, CareWell's team of physicians are trained to address almost any minor injury that might keep you out of the cool, refreshing pool.