Dive into Water Safety

digitallinkPersonal Safety Guide

With the arrival of summer, this means time spent on or in the water. We have covered boating safety in a previous post, and today we’ll provide some safety tips for general water safety. No matter how well you can swim, there are certain things to keep in mind to keep you and your family safe this summer. 

Learn to swim  

Children should be enrolled in swimming lessons conducted by qualified instructors. Having strong swimming skills is something that not only reduces the risk of drowning, but it also helps build confidence and knowledge in and around water. The younger you learn to be comfortable in the water, the less afraid you will be and better equipped in dangerous situations.  

Supervise  

Being able to swim doesn’t completely remove the risks associated with drowning. Therefore, whether at the pool, beach, lake, or any other body of water, children should never be left alone or out of arm’s reach of an adult. Always keep children within sight near water.   

The Canadian Red Cross states that “a small child can disappear in seconds and can drown in only a few centimetres of water – enough to cover the mouth and nose. Typically, these drownings occur in backyard pools, toddler pools, the bathtub, or at the beach.”  

Drowning is one of the leading causes of unintentional death among children ages one to four. Keep your little ones safe by ensuring they are closely supervised by a responsible adult.  

Wear life jackets  

Life jackets or personal floatation devices can provide extra security on the water. Anyone participating in water activities should always wear a life jacket. By law, you are required to have a life jacket on board for each person on a watercraft.

“Wearing a lifejacket or a PFD can prevent 90% of boating-related drownings.”

Canadian Red Cross 

Be water aware  

Be cautious in open water. Lakes and rivers can present unique challenges, so you should always be aware of your surroundings. Understand the risks associated with currents, waves, tangling underwater plants, or other hazards. Follow safety guidelines and warnings associated with where you are located.  

Stay hydrated  

During the summer, it is easy to become dehydrated. Drink plenty of water and be sure to protect yourself from UV rays by regularly applying sunscreen, wearing a hat, and UV-protective clothing.

Always reapply sunscreen after getting out of the water and every hour regardless of water activities.   

When working in the heat, drinking water is essential to prevent dehydration. Drink one cup (8 ounces) of water every 15–20 minutes, and remember that drinking water at shorter intervals is more effective than drinking large amounts infrequently. 

We want you to enjoy your summer and the water activities. By prioritizing safety and staying vigilant on and in the water, you will help keep everyone safe this season.