Based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) statistics, about
10 people lose their life due to drowning in a non-boating related drowning
incident, such as those in backyard and public
swimming pools. 20% of the people in that statistic are young children under the age
of 14. While this information is certainly harrowing, it is most upsetting
when considering that the vast majority of child drownings in swimming
pools should have been preventable.
If you have a swimming pool or are planning on taking your kids swimming,
remember these tips and hints at all times:
CPR: If there is no lifeguard present,
you need to be the lifeguard, which includes knowing how to perform CPR on
a child. Ideally, any adult present will be able to perform CPR in case
multiple children need help or one adult is incapacitated as well. The
American Red Cross often has free CPR lessons at specific locations. Visit
their website for more information about classes near you.
Fencing: No pool should be without some sort of perimeter fencing if a child lives
at the home. Since it is unreasonable to expect a parent to always be
able to see their young child each moment of the day, a fence is a simple
way to prevent them from getting near the water of a backyard pool. Fences
and gates should be locked and only adults should have the key or code.
Cleanliness: Do not keep toys, swimming equipment, or anything that could intrigue
a young child near the pool. It is believed that most infant drownings
are caused by the child attempting to retrieve an item floating on the
water or near the edge of the pool.
First-aid kits: Somewhere in your backyard, you should keep a first-aid kit for use in
emergencies. In addition to regular first-aid supplies, you will want
to ensure there are scissors within the kit to cut away clothing, hair,
or even a pool cover that has trapped a child. If possible, keep an outdoor
phone near the kit so you can call 911.
Swimming safety: If you have a pool in your backyard, you should anticipate that one day
your child will want to go in it alone, despite your warnings and instructions.
Arrange for swimming lessons to help your child learn how to float and
swim on their own. You should also insist that anyone who is not a strong
swimmer, regardless of age, wear lifejackets at all times. Floatation
toys are not lifejacket substitutes.
If your child has been hurt or passed away due to a drowning incident at
someone else’s pool, you can
contact Williams DeClark Tuschman Co., L.P.A. Our Toledo personal injury attorneys
are here to offer compassionate legal support and help you pursue compensation
for your damages or loss.