After two years of COVID lockdowns and more than 10 million missed swimming lessons, drownings are at a 25-year high. This summer there are some simple things you can do to help avoid adding to this tragic statistic.
The first step is learning to swim well. The experts at Carlile Swimming say this means being capable of swimming 400 metres with good technique. Sadly, more than 40% of children leave primary school unable to swim 50 metres or keep themselves afloat for two minutes. If your children are not enrolled in swimming lessons now is the time to start. Here are five other tips for a safer summer.
1. Always have an adult, supervising children in and around water. For small children this means being within arm’s reach. Supervising also means not drinking, cooking the BBQ or scanning your phone. It means always keeping your eye on them. Research shows lack of supervision is the main factor in 70% of toddler drownings.
2. At the beach, forget trying to judge where the rips are, simply swim between the flags. No flags no swim.
3. If you own a pool, check your gates and fences. Make sure they are compliant.
4. If a child is missing, check any water first. In an emergency, every second counts.
5. Swimming and drugs and alcohol do not mix. In teenagers to adults drugs and alcohol play a major part in drownings.
You can read more about SAFER Swimming here: https://www.carlile.com.au/blog/