Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Bryan Police reminds parents of water safety
This year the Bryan Police Department has responded to one near drowning and one drowning. The first one happened on April 25, 2009, where a 10 month old infant nearly drowned in a bath tub. The infant was reported unconscious, not breathing and did not have a pulse. Officer Adam Brooks arrived and began CPR and the Bryan Fire Department arrived and continued CPR. The infant survived and is doing fine. The second incident happened on June 14, 2009, and had a tragic ending. A 5 year old child went missing near the water at Lake Bryan. After more than 12 hours of searching, the child was found deceased on June 15, 2009.
These stories bring water safety for children to the forefront of our minds. With summer just getting started, parents need to be cautious with their children around water. Whether the water is a lake, pool, or bathtub, it is imperative that a responsible adult watches the children closely and at all times.
Here are some safety tips:
• Actively supervise children in and around water. Never leave them unattended, even for a moment. Stay where you can see, hear and reach kids in water. Avoid talking on the phone, preparing a meal, reading and other distractions. Lakes or ponds may be shallow near the bank and then increase in depth sharply further out from shore
• Assign one adult to watch the children in the water. Use a Water Watcher card as a physical reminder that the adult holding the card is responsible for watching the children as they swim.
• If you have a pool or spa, or if your child visits a home that has a pool or spa, it should be surrounded on all four sides by a fence at least five feet high with gates that close and latch automatically. Studies estimate that this type of isolation fencing could prevent 50 percent to 90 percent of child drownings in residential pools.
• A pool or spa should be equipped with an anti-entrapment drain cover and an automatic device that can shut off the drain's suction. The powerful suction forces can trap a child underwater or cause internal injuries.
• Don't leave toys in or near the pool, where they could attract unsupervised kids. For extra protection, consider a pool alarm and alarms on the doors, windows and gates leading to the pool.
• Enroll your kids in swimming lessons around age 4, but don't assume swimming lessons make your child immune to drowning. There is no substitute for active supervision.
• Make sure kids wear foot protection; even in the water, they should wear aqua socks or water shoes. Ponds and lakes may hide jagged rocks, broken glass, or trash.
• Don't rely on inflatable swimming toys such as "water wings" and noodles. If your child can't swim, stay within an arm's reach.
• Learn infant and child CPR. This is just as important as learning adult CPR.
• Keep rescue equipment, a phone and emergency numbers by the pool.
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