Unfortunately, the beginning of each summer swim season here in Las Vegas usually starts with either a close call or a fatal drowning of a toddler somewhere in the valley. On a Thursday night late in May a toddler was recovered, nearly lifeless, from his residential swimming pool in the northwest part of Las Vegas. The fortunate child was rushed by paramedics to the Summerlin Hospital Medical Center in critical condition. This young boy’s condition was listed as serious but stable by only a few hours later, but even after a preliminary investigation it was still unclear how the child ended up in the pool, whose care he was under, and whether or not he was unattended.
In this instance, the residential pool was enclosed in a safety fence, but that proved not to be enough to keep this toddler safe. At Safe Defenses we are committed to a fatality-free summer around our swimming pools, and in this article will discuss some of the other areas that could have helped prevent this near drowning.
4 Easy Drowning Prevention Tips
Keep Gates Latched & Locked
A fence only protects the perimeter, but as you may recall from our article Will a Fence Make Your Pool Safe Enough, it shouldn’t be the sole barrier between your toddler and the water. While a gate is often the access point for toddlers to enter a residential swimming pool a well performing pool lock can help you prevent pool entry. We suggest self-closing and self-latching gates, and the inclusion of a pool lock for extra protection.
Install a Safety Device or Alarm
In the instance your toddler enters the gate on their own, having a gate alarm, wave alarm, or other swimming pool safety device can alert you of their presence in the pool. They are not usually very expensive and provide that extra layer of protection and peace of mind.
Teach Your Child to Swim
Classes are available from qualified and certified instructors at locations around the valley. As you may recall in the A, B , C & Ds of Drowing Prevention, every member of your household should take swim lessons, and this includes toddlers. Choose one designed to help your little one learn the life saving skills that just might buy them critical time needed to make the difference needed should they end up in the swimming pool. Choosing a private swim lesson will help fast track them to swimming this summer.
Eyes on Baby
Children find creative ways to get into your swimming pool. You can have every barrier in place, and it still not be 100 percent able to prevent your child from nearly drowning in your pool. If you have a swimming pool on your premises, be sure to keep a constant eye on your baby to ensure they haven’t made their way outside, or into the pool area.
Remember that drownings are the leading cause of death of children under 4 and is 100 percent avoidable. Keep these safety tips in mind, and have our pool safety experts come and evaluate your swimming pool for possible safety improvements. We look forward to a fun and safe summer.