Safety tips for swimming and staying safe this summer

June 7, 2011 • Vistas

Now that June is here and it’s beginning to get warmer every day, it’s a great time to go swimming and cool off!  Families may choose to take vacations to areas which are near a lake, a beach or a river.  Or they may prefer a public pool in Roswell, perhaps Cahoon Park Pool, some neighborhood pools, or private pools around town.  Here are some summer water safety tips to make your water adventure more enjoyable.
General Water Safety Tips
•Learn to swim, regardless of your age. It is especially important that children be  taught to swim.  It could save a life.  The best thing anyone can do to stay safe in and around the water is to learn to swim. Always swim with a buddy. [auth] Never swim alone.
•Cahoon Park Swimming Pool will, once again, offer swimming lessons this summer.  You can get information about that by contacting Christina Reyer at 575-624-6764.
•Swim in areas supervised by a lifeguard.
•Read and obey all rules and posted signs.
•Watch out for the dangerous “too’s” – too tired, too cold, too far from safety, too much sun, too much strenuous activity.
•Set family water safety rules based on swimming abilities (for example, inexperienced swimmers should stay in water less than chest deep).
•Pay attention to local weather conditions and forecasts. Stop swimming at the first indication of bad weather.
•Use a feet-first entry when entering the water.  Enter headfirst only when the area is clearly marked for diving and has no obstructions.
•Do not mix alcohol with swimming, diving or boating. Alcohol impairs your judgment, balance, and coordination, affects your swimming and diving skills, and reduces your body’s ability to stay warm.
•Protect your skin and that of your children by wearing sunscreen with a sun protection factor of at least SPF15.
•Never leave a child unobserved around water. Your eyes must be on the child at all times.  Know where pool safety equipment, such as life hooks and life rings, are located and make sure there is a phone at pool side.
•If a child is missing, check the pool first. Go to the edge of the pool and scan the entire pool, bottom, and surface, as well as the surrounding pool area.
As a former pool builder, a father, and a grandfather, one of my greatest fears continues to be small children around a swimming pool.  Every summer, a swimming tragedy strikes some family somewhere.  I believe that pool fences are imperative, and if you buy a house with a pool, and it has no fence or similar safety barrier, you may as well plan on that investment very soon.  And without question, “taking the kids swimming”  requires that we pay constant attention to them.  There really is no room for error.  Don’t let that tragedy be yours.
Thinking about setting up a Neighborhood Watch?  Call Richard and Steve at 622-SAFE (7233) for information.    And don’t forget, the number for Chaves County Crime Stoppers is 1-888-594-TIPS (8477).

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