When it comes to swimming pool and water safety, be sure to have layers of pool protection in place to prevent unnecessary drownings of children and pets. Here is a list of the layers of pool protection you should have in place at your home for maximum pool safety:
- Education & Active Supervison – Education and supervision should always be the primary layer of pool protection, but studies show 69 percent of drownings occur when parental supervision fails and there are no other “backup layers” in use. For educational purposes, you should have home safety pool rules that your children understand and follow consistently.
- Physical Barriers – A pool safety barrier (fence) separating the pool from your home and all access doors and entrances is a very important layer of protection that provides a barrier during unsupervised moments. Access doors with high locks are an extra layer layer of pool protection.
- Alarms – Alarms on access doors are another layer of protection. Alarms both in the pool (pool alarm) and worn on the child or pet (personal immersion alarm) are also available.
- Aquatic Skills – Water survival training for a child capable of moving around is highly recommended. There are many local organizations that provide swimming lessons such as your local YMCA.
- Emergency Plan – CPR and your knowledge of rescue techniques are a final layer of protection should there be an accident or emergency.
The goal with instituted layers of pool protection is to come as close to a “fail safe” system of preventing drowning incidents as possible. This way if there is a momentary lapse of supervision for whatever reason, there are several backup systems in place. All must fail before a drowning can take place. A door has been left unlocked or open, the alarm system or device for the door has been turned off, the pool safety barrier has been left open, your child does enter the water, the pool and personal immersion alarms fail or aren’t heard, the child panics and does not attempt to utilize survival swim training, and CPR is administered too late to save the child.
Set down definite pool rules covering its use and more importantly when it is not in use. We all have a tendency to give a little leeway on this or that with our children, but not when it comes to the pool.
THERE CAN BE NO COMPROMISE ON POOL SAFETY. YOU ARE DEALING WITH A LIFE AND DEATH SITUATION.