SAN DIEGO — From pools to lakes to the ocean, water in San Diego is a big way of life. But each year drowning is a leading cause of unintentional death for young kids. Drowning is silent and can happen in as little as 30 seconds.
That is why it is so important to know how to swim, how to be safe around open water and how to know what to do if someone is drowning.
SDFD Fire Captain Alma Lowry joins our Laura Cavanaugh to share essential water safety tips to create a safer place for your children to swim so that you and your family can enjoy the summer San Diego fun.
Drowning can happen quickly and silently, but it can be preventable. Did you know that drowning can happen in less than two inches of water?
Constant visual supervision is critical when children are playing around any type of water. Home swimming pools are the most common way children ages 1-4 drown. If you have a pool or jacuzzi, make sure to have secure fencing and self-latching gates to block access to water.
It’s also essential to designate a Water Watcher to visually supervise the area. A Water Watcher is at least 16 years old, has the skills, knowledge and ability to recognize and rescue someone in distress.
Ideally, this person knows CPR and can call for emergency help. Lowry stresses how important it is to know how to swim and to teach your children to swim.
“If money is a barrier to entry for swim lessons, please don’t let that be,” said Lowry. “Go to sdswimsafer.org. There are multiple different scholarships available for all different kinds – mom and tot, teenagers, pre-teens, little ones. It’s never too late to learn how to swim.”
We live in a beautiful coastal community and we are surrounded by water. Understand the dangers of the uncontrolled environment.
“Drowning happens in seconds. It happens when you turn your back. It happens when you’re on your phone,” said Lowry.
Always keep eyes on your child, even at the beach. Check in with a lifeguard if you’re at the beach or bay. Follow red flag warnings and advisories about rip currents.
Never swim alone, even if you are a good swimmer and always swim with a buddy.
Find water safety activities, resource booths, refreshments and pool parties at a pool near you. Carmel Valley Pool is hosting an event for National Drowning Prevention Week on Saturday July 23.
Vista Terrace Pool is hosting a Dive-In Movie on August 5. All events are open to the public and free of charge.
We can enjoy all the summer fun San Diego has to offer when we put water safety first.
Find a local pool near you that provides swim lessons and submit a form to learn more about the City of San Diego’s free swimming lessons waiver program. You could save a life.
Learning water safety skills saves lives. For more information, visit www.sdswimsafer.org
Sponsored by: Prevent Drowning Foundation of San Diego