It’s beginning to get toasty in the Valley, and we’re all fretting about water safety. Over the Easter weekend, a little girl drowned in Saguaro Lake, and it was absolutely horrible to hear about it.
We know you want to do what’s right and safe for your kiddos. That means watching them around water, practicing touch supervision and giving them the tools they need to survive.
Did you know swim floaties are incredibly unsafe for your child? Several online resources (the BabyCenter, Whale Wisdom, and Parents.com, to name a few) have spoken out about the dangers of using flotation devices. They give children a false sense of security, and prevent them from having the skills they need to survive in an emergency.
A CLOSE CALL:
Last summer, we had a terrible scare at my sister-in-law’s house. We had gathered the family for a barbecue and fun day of swimming. Much to my dismay, the little ones had been swimming with floaties. Naturally, I could not help but have my eyes glued on those who were swimming, as I do not trust the safety of the devices.
When the sun had set, we cleared the pool and brought everyone inside the house. Or so we thought. When everyone went inside, my sister-in-law grabbed her brother and threw him in the pool. They were playfully wrestling and splashing loudly, but thank goodness I had been watching from the kitchen window.
While the grown ups were creating a ruckus, my 6-year-old nephew silently ran out of the house, and launched himself into the pool without his floaties. He had been wearing them all day during the supervised swim time, so he thought he would be able to stay afloat. Instead, with fear in his eyes, he quickly disappeared under the surface of the water, and I bolted outside to help pull him out.
Please, teach your children to swim, rather than allowing them rely on insufficient swimming aids. If a kid cannot swim, he or she must wear a properly fitting life jacket. Every child must have an adult fully present at all times. Check out the U.S. Coast Guard life jacket standards here.