As a pool owner, you are aware of the potential hazards that come with having a pool. As fun as they are, there is a great responsibility. Pool safety is a top priority as accidental drownings continue to be a leading cause of death in young children. Many drowning accidents happen to responsible people that just did not think something like that would happen to their family.
But it does. Kids are active and kids are curious. It is not always possible to supervise them 100% of the time. An investigation by the Commission recently published some astonishing facts regarding pool safety and accidents.
- On average, 279 children younger than 5 drown per year
- 69% of drownings occur when one or both parents are supposed to be supervising
- 65% of drownings occur in the family pool (11% occur at a neighbor’s pool)
- 77% of drowning victims have been seen 5 minutes or less before (it happens quickly and without a cry for help)
- 39% of supervising adults were doing chores, while 9% were distracted on the phone
These accidents happen quickly and often without warning. And they are devastating to all. Drowning tragedies like this can be prevented. If you have a pool, the best way to protect your children is to make the pool safe. Drownings are more likely to occur in backyard pools than public pools which have led to increased awareness of pool safety.
Layers of Protection
Supervision is always the first layer of protection when it comes to pool safety. Because drownings have still happened with supervision, additional layers are needed to keep children safe. Additional layers of protection to have include:
- Pool safety fence with a self-closing and self-latching pool gate
- Access doors to the pool area or yard have high locks
- Alarms as an additional layer of protection on each access doors
- Pool safety cover as an additional layer of protection to use when the pool is not in use.
- Water survival training for your kids
- CPR and pool rescue knowledge
When you have multiple layers of protection, the chances of drowning are significantly reduced. All of these layers have to fail in order for a drowning to occur. There can not be any compromise when it comes to pool safety. You need to set definite rules and have as many protective devices in place as possible. When it comes to pool safety, the situation is always life or death.
Making Your Pool Safe
A pool safety fence is one of the best investments when it comes to pool safety. It puts a physical barrier between your house and the pool. It is as essential as a seat belt is for cars. Pool fences need to be at least 4-feet high, but this varies by municipality requirements. Check with your local agencies to find out the fence regulations for your area.
Removable pool fences are the most popular and practical option. High-quality mesh fencing prevents climbing and keeps children out of the pool. Mesh fences are affordable and reliable as well as aesthetically pleasing. Your fence must have a self-closing pool gate that is the same height as the fence. A self-latching feature must also be on the gate and at a height of at least 4 feet above the ground but the higher the better and safer.
Other tips to remember to enhance pool safety include:
- Not keeping objects near the pool that may attract kids
- Not leaving a child unattended to go answer a phone/door
- Not keeping staging areas (tables and chairs) near the fence
Any door that leads out to the pool should have an alarm. These alarms are especially useful if you have older children that can unlock the doors. Sliding glass doors need to be latched from the top in addition to their standard lock. Many cases of drowning children have been linked to a sliding glass door being left open. Do not use doggy doors if that leads to the pool area. An adventurous child will find it entertaining to crawl through to get outside.
CPR and Rescue Training
Anyone that has a pool needs to take CPR and rescue, training classes. Adults and teenage children would benefit from having these skills. Even when pool safety is enforced, accidents can happen. Active kids can accidentally slip or get bumped into the pool. Whether being in the pool is intentional or not, rescue and life-saving skills are an invaluable necessity. There are also courses children can take about survival in water. In these classes, children learn to:
- Navigate the pool and steps
- Stay calm and not panic if they fall in the water
- Rollover onto their back and float
- Float to the side of the pool to hang on to a wall
It goes without saying that anytime children are playing in or around a pool, there must be supervision.
In cases of playtime, make sure your kids know basic survival skills for staying safe in the water.
Make sure you get CPR training from any local hospital or health agency.
When the pool is not in use, make sure the pool fence is locked and if you have a cover, cover your swimming pool.
Guardian Pool Fence Las Vegas has been an industry leader in manufacturing and installing mesh pool fences for over 30 years.
Make pool safety your top priority with multi-layer protection, starting with a high-quality pool safety fence. Call us today for a consultation and estimate.