Backyard pools are a great way to unwind and relax with loved ones but can pose risks when rules aren’t followed. Here are the essentials keep your family safe while having a blast around the water.
Eyes on the pool
Drowning can occur in as little as 10 seconds, so keeping little ones at arms reach at all times is essential. Be alert and available to small children. Avoid distractions ~ let the phone ring, have someone else tend the BBQ, and keep your attention on the pool.
Use inflatables wisely
Inflatables are a lot of fun for kids and adults alike, but to maximize safety, limit the number of inflatables in the pool so you can easily see all the swimmers. Keep alert as inflatable toys can overturn easily. Always remove inflatables from the pool when not in use to avoid kids trying to reach them.
Install a Fence
Ensure you have a secure fence, with a self-locking gate. Check your local building codes for requirements. If any doors from the house enter directly onto a pool deck, install a door alarm to alert you if a little one enters the pool deck alone.
Have a family meeting to create some easy-to-remember pool safety rules, and ensure your visitors are made aware. Better yet ~ post your family pool rules in a visible location as an easy way to remind your family and friends.
The vast majority of home pools are not made for diving. Have a feet-first policy, especially down slides. Diving head-first into a shallow pool can result in significant neck and spinal injury, so encourage safe water entry for all guests as a basic pool safety rule.
Drain the water from small, inflatable pools when not in use and remove ladders and stairs from above-ground pools to prevent curious little ones from falling in. For larger pools, install a pool safety cover or floating alarm when not in use to prevent accidental entry.
Be Present and Prepared
As a pool owner, you are ultimately responsible for the safety of those using your pool. Ensure at least one homeowner is present at all times while the pool is being used. Be prepared by keeping rescue equipment, a first-aid kit and CPR instructions at the poolside. Keep emergency numbers and a phone close to the pool. Better yet ~ have at least one homeowner trained in first-aid and CPR.
Never Swim Alone
Even seasoned swimmers can get into trouble. In the event of an emergency, such as a cramp or heart attack, you may not be able to get out of the pool without help. Be sure someone else is nearby while you are swimming.
Teach children to ask permission
Let your child know if they are swimming at a friend’s house they need to ask permission before jumping in the pool.
When it comes to pool safety, there’s no substitution for supervision. Eyes on the pool parents! 75% of childhood drownings occurred when a parent was present.