There’s a good chance most of us will have the opportunity to jump into some water during the summer months. Many cities in the USA have public pools and aquatic parks for everyone to enjoy. And there are lakes, rivers, or oceans almost always nearby. That’s why it is so important to know water safety and provide our kids with the skills to know how to be safe in and around water.
Did you know:
- Each year, more than 3,400 people drown in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- More than one in five fatal drowning victims are children under 14
- Drowning is the second-leading cause of injury-related death among children ages 1-14
- Seven out of every ten African-American and seven out of every ten Hispanic children cannot swim, according to a national research study by USA Swimming and the University of Memphis.
- African-American children drown at a rate nearly three times higher than their Caucasian peers (CDC).
* source: USA Swimming Foundation, 2011
That’s why it is so important to learn to swim and Olympic Gold Medalist Swimmer Cullen Jones is committed to sharing his near drowning personal story and to promoting water safety for parents and children across the country through the USA Swimming Foundation national child-focused water safety initiative, Make a Splash.
Make a Splash is a national child-focused water safety initiative created by the USA Swimming Foundation, with the goal of teaching every child in America how to swim. For more details and information about swimming classes and Cullen Jones tour dates, please click here.
Five Tips for Keeping Children Safe In and Around Water*
1. Teach children to swim. It’s the best way to be safer in the water. Research shows that parents are the most influential factors in whether or not a child learns to swim. Only 13 percent of children from non-swimming households will ever learn to swim, according to national research conducted by the University of Memphis for USA Swimming.
2. Make sure a responsible adult is watching the water at all times. Drowning can be completely silent, and most child drownings occur when the victim has been out of sight for less than five minutes.
3. Remind kids to always obey the rules of the pool, not to jump on or dunk other swimmers, and not to jump or dive unless they know how deep the water is.
4. Require kids to always swim with a buddy.
5. Remember, you don’t have to be at a pool to drown. Lakes, rivers, large puddles and any other bodies of water also require caution. Make sure your child knows how to swim, whether or not they’ll be around a pool this summer.
*Source: USA Swimming Foundation, 2011
Have fun, be safe, make a splash!