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Learn swimming safety to protect kids at beach, pool

The Daily Herald - 3/28/2024

Don't forget to dive into water safety before hitting the pool or heading to the beach for spring break.

Parents might be surprised to learn that drowning is the leading cause of death for children ages one to four and the second leading cause of accidental death for kids ages five to 14, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

That's why responsible caregivers should know how to swim, be comfortable in all aquatic settings, and learn how to administer CPR in the event of an emergency. Adults and children should always wear a life jacket around open water, even if you know how to swim.

Finally, remember constant adult supervision is key to preventing accidents around the water. Vigilance matters: 9 out of 10 drowning deaths happen when a caregiver is supervising but not paying attention.

So this spring break, turn off that cell phone and put away your beach read if you're on water watch. Or, better yet, make a splash and spend some quality time swimming with your kids for some family fun they'll never forget.

Lisa Zarda

U.S. Swim School Association

Scottsdale, Ariz.