Splashing water, the smell of burgers over the barbeque, kids laughing and having a great time. These are the sounds of summer in Phoenix. But when it comes to pool parties summer can bring more than just fun.
May was National Pool Safety month and here in Phoenix that’s more than idle talk. A famous economist once published a study showing that when it comes to the death of children, swimming pools are 100 times more dangerous than guns.
With this knowledge it’s important that all Phoenicians understand the best methods of keeping a swimming pool as safe as possible.
The first piece of advice is one that, while obvious, is commonly overlooked as a factor for child swimming deaths. This piece of advice is simple; make sure your children are proficient swimmers. The large majority of child swimming pool deaths happen to children that were unable to swim or whose ability to swim was poor at best. This might seem obvious but it is surprising how commonly it is overlooked. While letting a toddler into a pool unsupervised is a terrible idea, introducing young children to the water and teaching them to swim well is a great way to lessen the likelihood of their getting in over their head. Consider getting them swimming lessons if necessary.
Another way to keep your backyard swimming pool safer is to install a safety fence. Swimming pool fences can be installed by many pool professionals in the Phoenix valley. Swimming pool fences typically cost between $10-$15 per foot and that price includes all fence, gate, and installation costs. A good gate will keep the youngest of children from sneaking into the pool when no one is looking. Not only will a swimming pool fence make your pool safer, but it can even reduce the amount you pay for home insurance, which is not something you will hear me complaining about.
Naturally no list of swimming pool safety suggestions is complete without the simple, yet profound piece of advice to make sure that an adult is watching anytime children are playing in the swimming pool. A drowning death can happen quickly and without warning which makes the presence of an attentive adult crucial as far as the safety of swimming children is concerned. Make sure the adult watching is actually watching, not just reading a book or talking on the phone. Attention is crucial. It is almost impossible to hear a child while they struggle underwater, eyes are needed as much as ears.
So there you go:
- Make sure your children are proficient swimmers
- Install a pool fence
- Always have an adult on duty while kids are swimming
Three easy ways to drastically reduce the likelihood that your home ever experiences a serious swimming pool injury, or, God forbid, an actual fatality.