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					Water Safety Poll
April 2011

Telephone survey of 1.085 adults U.S. Adults 18 years and older on April 7-11, 2011
conducted by ORC International. Margin of error is +/- 3.0 percent at the 95% confidence
level. Polling included total sample of 175 African-American adults, with 82 included
through a second wave of telephone interviews.

Where appropriate, comparison values from a March 2009 poll have been included: Telephone survey of 1,002 U.S.
Adults 18 years and older on March 20-23, 2009 conducted by CARAVAN® Opinion Research Corporation. Margin of
error is +/- 3.1 percent at the 95% confidence level..

Report Date: April 19, 2011

Communication Department
Marketing Department
     Nearly 8 in 10 households (78 percent) will participate in at least
     one water-related recreational activity this summer, down from 87
     percent two years ago.
     Supervise a child near a pool, lake or other body of water                        50%
          Go boating, sailing, water skiing, jet skiing or fishing                    47%
                           Swim in a place that has a lifeguard                        48%
    Swim in your own home pool or someone else’s home pool                            45%
                                                                                                              41 percent plan to swim
                         Swim in a place that has NO lifeguard                       41%                      in a place with no
                                                                                                              lifeguard, down from 48
                                              Swim at the beach                      40%                      percent two years ago.
       Go to a water park, water slide or other water attraction                     38%
                                          Swim in a public pool                      36%
                                         Swim in a pond or lake                 29%
                                        DON’T KNOW/NOT SURE               1%

                                                NONE OF THESE              21%
                                                                     0%        10%    20%   30%   40%   50%    60%   70%   80%   90%   100%



        Do you expect to participate in any of the following water activities this
        summer?
2
    Variations in Water Recreation
    • The likelihood of participating in water activities
      decreases with age and increases with income.
    • 78 percent of the population will participate in at least
      one water activity. For those 65 and over, half will
      participate in a water activity this summer.
    • College educated adults are more likely to participate in
      a water activity (84 percent vs. 73 percent for those with
      a high school diploma or less). Further, college
      graduates, in particular, are more likely to swim in a
      place with NO lifeguard (52 percent vs. 37 percent for
      those with some college or less).

3
    Variations in Water Recreation (cont.)

    • Hispanic respondents are more likely to swim in a
      private pool, a public pool, or at the beach this
      summer:
         – 64 percent vs. 42 percent for White and African-American
           respondents* who plan to swim in a private pool.
         – 57 percent vs. 33 percent for White and African-American
           respondents who plan to swim at a public pool.
         – 55 percent vs. 39 percent for White and African-American
           respondents who plan to swim at the beach.




4    *non-Hispanic
      About a third of adults do not realize that close supervision --
      staying within arm’s reach -- is safer than putting floaties on a
      small child.


       STAY WITHIN ARM’S
            REACH                                  64%                                  Adults with children in the
                                                                                        household are more likely
                                                                                        to know that staying
                                                                                        within arm’s reach of a
                                                                                        child in water is the best
                                                                                        thing to do (71 percent vs.
    PUT FLOATIES ON THE                                                                 58 percent for those with
           CHILD                         32%                                            no children in the
                                                                                        household.




             DK/NOT SURE     5%


                            0%     10%     20%     30%     40%     50%     60%    70%     80%     90%     100%




    My next questions are asking for your opinion about the BEST thing to do in some situations
    involving water safety. If you are supervising a small child in the water, is it better to stay
    within arm’s length of the child or to put floaties, such as water wings, on the child?
5
      If caught in a strong current, nearly half of adults knew that
      swimming with the current parallel to shore is best, though nearly
      20 percent of adults are unsure of what to do in that situation.

          Swim with the current, parallel to shore                48%                    Hispanic and African-
                                                                                         American respondents, as
                                                                                         well as, those with some
    Tread water until the current stops and then                                         college or less were least
                                                           18%                           likely to swim with the
          swim diagonally toward shore                                                   current, parallel to the
                                                                                         shore:
                                                                                         •30 percent vs. 54 percent
         Swim against the current, toward shore 8%
                                                                                         for White respondents.
                                                                                         •42 percent vs. 62 percent
    Tread water until the current stops and then                                         for college graduates.
                                                 8%
               swim toward shore


                                    DK/NOT SURE            18%

                                                      0%   10%   20%   30%   40%   50%   60%   70%   80%   90%   100%




    My next questions are asking for your opinion about the BEST thing to do in some situations
    involving water safety. What is the BEST thing to do if you are caught in a strong current near
    the beach? Should you . . .
6
       More than 8 in 10 adults knew that throwing a rope or something
       that floats would be the best way to help someone struggling in
       deep water.

    Throw the person something that floats or a
                                                                               84%
            rope to pull them to safety


    Jump into the water and drag the person to
                                                      12%
                      safety


Shout instructions to the person on the best
                                                          1%
           way to swim to safety



                                     DK/Not Sure          3%


                                                     0%    10%   20%   30%   40%   50%   60%   70%   80%   90%   100%




     My next questions are asking for your opinion about the BEST thing to do in some situations
     involving water safety. Which of the following is the BEST way to help someone struggling in
     deep water? Should you . . ..
7
     Leaving a child temporarily unsupervised near a home pool
     is never acceptable, according to nearly all adults.

    It is never ok to step away from a child in or
                                                                                   96%
                   around the water

                                   Thirty minutes 0%


                                 Fifteen minutes      0%


                                    Five minutes          1%


                                     One minute       3%



                                    DK/Not Sure       1%

                                                     0%    10%   20%   30%   40%    50%   60%   70%   80%   90%   100%




    If you are supervising a child in or near a home pool and need to leave temporarily to
    answer the door or get the phone, how long is a reasonable amount of time to safely
8   be away? Would you say. . .
     Adults are least confident in their ability to maneuver out
     of a rip current.

         You see someone
      floating face down in a                  40%                       17%              17%       8%     16%     1%

          swimming pool

      Someone you know is
     in trouble in water that is           29%                   15%          22%           8%            23%      2%

           over your head

         You get a muscle
      cramp when you are in                28%                   17%          20%          9%             24%      2%

       water over your head

      You are caught in a rip
      current and can’t make            18%        13%             22%            12%               32%            4%

      progress toward shore
                                   0%    10%     20%       30%     40%      50%     60%     70%     80%     90%    100%

                              Very Confident (5)       4     3    2      Not confident at all (1)    DK/Not Sure


    On a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 is not confident at all and 5 is very confident, how
    confident are you that you could safely handle the following water safety situations?
9   The first situation is. . .
     Variations in Confidence of Abilities
     • Men were more confident in their abilities to handle water
       emergencies:
        – 39 percent of men could safely handle being caught in a rip current,
          compared to 23 percent of women.
        – 49 percent could safely handle getting a muscle cramp, compared to
          39 percent of women.
        – More than half of men (54 percent) could safely handle a situation
          where someone is in trouble in water over their head, compared to 36
          percent of women.
        – 63 percent could safely handle a situation where someone is floating
          face down in a pool, compared to 51 percent of women.
     • Adults with children in the household were more confident in
       their ability to safely handle getting a muscle cramp (50
       percent vs. 39 percent for those without children in the
       household).

10
      Nearly 2 in 5 adults recalled an experience in which
      someone in deep water needed help. For a quarter of
      these adults, this experience occurred at a lake.


                                                              Where did this occur?

                                                         •    25%               At a lake
                                                         •    17%               At a public pool
                 No,
                                     Yes,                •    17%               At the beach
                62%                  38%
                                                         •    16%               At a home pool
                                                         •    14%               At a river
                                                         •    2%                At a water park
                                                         •    9%                Somewhere else



     Have you ever been in a situation where someone nearby needed help because they
     were in trouble in deep water? Where did this situation occur? If this happened more
11   than once, answer for the most recent time. Was it . . .
 More than 6 in 10 reacted to the situation by going
 into the water.
     Base=Been in the situation that someone nearby needed help because they were in trouble in deep water


                                                                                       Men are more likely to have
       Go into the water                             63%                               gone in the water in
                                                                                       response to the situation (70
                                                                                       percent vs. 54 percent for
                                                                                       women).
     Alert a lifeguard or
                                          32%
      another person
                                                                                       39 percent of those with
                                                                                       excellent or very good
                                                                                       swimming skills reported
 Throw something to
                                 16%                                                   going in the water to help,
     the person                                                                        compared to 20 percent of
                                                                                       those with good skills and 15
                                                                                       percent of those with skills
                                                                                       described as fair or poor.
               Call 9-1-1 5%


       Something else             17%


                            0%      10%     20%      30%     40%      50%     60%      70%     80%      90%      100%


      What did you do? Did you…

12
           More than a third (37 percent) describe their
           swimming skills as lacking or nonexistent.
     50%

     45%


     40%


     35%

     30%
                                              25%
     25%                      22%
     20%
              16%                                              15%
     15%                                                                                    13%
                                                                               9%
     10%

     5%

     0%

            Excellent     Very Good          Good              Fair           Poor       Can't swim
                                                                                           at all
                                                      Apr-11

     How well would you say you can swim? Would you say that your swimming skills are.
     ..
13
         Nearly 6 in 10 learned to swim between the
         ages of 5 and 10.
           Base=Respondents who can swim
         100%


         90%

         80%


         70%

         60%
                                      57%
         50%


         40%


         30%
                    21%
         20%                                           13%
         10%                                                            3%            4%             2%
          0%

                4 years or        5-10 years       11-15 years       16-20 years   21 or older   DK/Not Sure
                   less

     How old were you when you learned to swim? Would you say. . .

14
     Variations in Swimming Skills
     • Men are more likely to know how to swim than women (92%
       versus 82%).
     • Older Americans are least likely to be able to swim. 29% of
       those 65 and over can’t swim at all.
     • Younger adults (18 to 34) are more likely to describe their
       swimming skills excellent, very good, or good—83 percent
       versus 54 percent for those 35 and older.
     • Those with children in the household are more likely to be
       able to swim (91 percent vs. 84 percent for those without
       children in the household).
     • Adults with at least some college are more likely to be able to
       swim (91 percent vs. 82 percent for those with a high school
       diploma or less).


15
     Variations in Swimming Skills (cont.)

     • Among those who learned to swim at age 10 or
       earlier, 22% have excellent swimming skills compared
       to 3% of those who learned after the age of 10.
     • Among those who learned to swim at age 4 or
       earlier, 34% have excellent skills, compared to 18%
       who learned between the ages of 5 and 10.
     • Adults 55 and older were more likely to have learned
       to swim at 11 years old or older (30 percent vs. 15
       percent for those younger than 55).



16
     Variations in Swimming Skills (cont.)

     • African-Americans were more likely to have
       learned to swim at a later age:
       – African-Americans were more likely to have
         learned at 11 years old or older (48 percent vs. 16
         percent for Hispanic and White adults).
     • 29 percent of African-Americans reported that
       they could not swim.



17

				
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