DROWNING PREVENTION

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					                                                                                        DROWNING
                  Drowning is the leading     Take a minute to read over the Drowning
                                                                                        PREVENTION
                    cause of accidental       Prevention Checklist. Have fun in your
                     death for infants and    pool or spa and don’t forget to check
               children under the age of      that the gate is latched behind you!
           five in California.
Young children are naturally attracted
to water, and effective barriers such as
fences, power safety covers, door alarm
systems and door closing mechanisms
can help detect and prevent unsuper-
vised access to the pool or spa.
Parents and pool and spa owners are
urged to use a “layered” approach to
safety, combining several barriers to
prevent drowning and near drowning.
A well-maintained fence should enclose
every pool/spa and be at least 5 feet
high with a self-closing, self-latching               State of California
                                                    The Resources Agency
gate; some cities and counties have           Department of Boating & Waterways
passed ordinances that require these
items. The pool should also have an              2000 Evergreen Street, Suite 100
alarm system, a power safety cover, and           Sacramento, CA 95815-3888
doors leading to the pool or spa should
be equipped with alarms and should be                   (888) 326-2822
self-closing and self-latching. Sliding                www.dbw.ca.gov
doors should be self-closing and self-
latching with automatic sliding door                  Gray Davis, Governor
closers. Check the barriers on a regular               State of California
basis to make sure that they are in good
working order.                                           Mary D. Nichols
Most important, parents and caretakers                Secretary for Resources
of little ones must keep an eye on children
at all times. Pool and spa owners should          Raynor Tsuneyoshi, Director
not develop a false sense of security                                                         Checklist for
because they have pool or spa barriers.        Department of Boating & Waterways
                                                                                           swimming pools
                                                                                                 and spas
                Drowning Prevention Checklist
                    The Department of Boating and Waterways offers pool/spa owners
                         the following checklist to help prevent child drownings.

Supervision                                s Look in the pool/spa area first if a
                                             child is missing!
s Never leave a
  child alone near
  water, even for                          Barriers
  a second.                                s Make sure your pool, spa or hot
s Don’t rely solely                          tub has a fence, wall or safety cover
  on barriers,                               that guards against unsupervised
  such as fences                             access, particularly by young children.
  and walls. There                         s Install exit alarms on all house          s Always drain standing (surface)
  is no substitute for vigilant super-       doors and windows leading to the            water from the pool or spa cover.
  vision and it must be combined             pool/spa area.                              Remember that even a couple
  with barriers!
                                           s Make sure doors are self-closing,           inches of water can be hazardous,
s Keep toys, tricycles, and other                                                        especially to young children.
                                             self-latching and are never propped
  children’s playthings out of the           open. Latches should be placed on
  water and away from the pool or            the pool side, out of reach of young
  spa. Move tables, chairs, planters         children and kept in proper work-         Emergency Procedures
  and other potential climbing aids          ing order.                                s Learn how to administer lifesaving
  away from the fence.
                                           s Make sure the safety cover is               techniques to children, including
s Clear vegetation and other obstacles                                                   cardiopulmonary resuscitation
                                             always closed when the pool or
  away from the fence to assure a clear                                                  (CPR).
                                             spa is not in use. Completely
  view of the pool/spa from the house.       remove cover before children              s Keep reaching and throwing aids,
s Don’t consider your children to be         are allowed in the pool or spa.             such as poles and life preservers,
  “drown-proof” because you en-                                                          on both sides of the pool.
  rolled them in water-proofing (an
  infant training class) or swimming                                                   s Install a phone, or keep a cordless
  classes. A child who falls into                                                        phone, in the pool or spa area.
  water unexpectedly may panic and                                                     s Post the emergency medical ser-
  forget learned swimming skills.                                                        vices phone number (9-1-1) in an
s Don’t rely on inflatable devices to                                                    easy-to-see place near the pool or
  keep your child afloat. These are                                                      spa, and make sure that everyone
  not substitutes for adult supervision.                                                 knows the numbers and how to
  All non-swimmers should wear                                                           dial the numbers.
  U.S. Coast Guard-approved life
  jackets when they are near water.

				
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