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Water Safety Tips

SWIMkids USA Safety Tips

Learning how to swim does not mean that children are completely safe around water. They are safer, but no one is water-safe or drown-proof.

  • LEARN TO SWIM - teach your child to swim
  • Use layers of protection around your pool.
    • Surround your pool on all four sides with a fence
    • Make sure the gates self-close and self-latch at a height children can't reach. Lock the gate and place the key high, out of a child's reach
    • Put a safety net over the pool
    • Use door alarms to alert you whenever anyone leaves the house
  • SUPERVISION - There is no substitute for parental vigilance. A responsible adult should be in the pool area within arm's length of children, providing "touch supervision".
  • Make sure adults are trained in CPR and life saving techniques so they can rescue a child in case of emergency
  • Keep rescue equipment (shepherd's crook or life preserver) and a portable telephone near the pool.



  • Put toilet lids down. Never leave open buckets of water standing around the house
  • Never leave a child unattended (by an responsible adult) in a bathtub!
  • At parties, have a designated WATER WATCHER supervising the pool at ALL TIMES. Their job is to keep their eyes on the swimmers. They should not be talking, eating, reading or talking on the phone.

Pool Safely Water Safety Tips:

  • Always watch your child when they are in or near a pool or spa
  • Teach children basic water safety tips
  • Keep children away from pool drains, pipes and other openings to avoid entrapments
  • Have a portable telephone close by at all times when you or your family are using a pool or spa
  • If a child is missing, look for him or her in the pool or spa first
  • Share safety instructions with family, friends and neighbors
  • Learn how to swim and teach your child how to swim
  • Learn to perform CPR on children and adults, and update those skills regularly
  • Understand the basics of life-saving so that you can assist in a pool emergency
  • Install a four-foot or taller fence around the perimeter of the pool and spa and use self-closing and self-latching gates; ask your neighbors and community groups to do the same at all residential and public pools
  • If your house serves as a fourth side of a fence around a pool, install door and window alarms and always use them
  • Install pool and gate alarms to alert you when children go near the water
  • Ensure any pool and spa you use has compliant drain covers, and ask if you do not know
  • Maintain pool and spa covers in good working order
  • Consider using a surface wave or underwater alarm
  • Have life-saving equipment such as life rings and reaching poles available for use

Safer 3 Pool Water Safety Tips:

  • Drowning is the second leading cause of accidental death in the U.S. among children under 14 and the leading cause of accidental death for children five and under.
  • Of all preschoolers who drown, 70% are in the care of one or both parents at the time and 75% are missing from sight for five minutes or less.
  • Fully 65% of all preschooler drowning incidents occur in the child's home pool and 33% occur at the homes of friends, neighbors or relatives...a child can drown in the time it takes to answer a telephone.
  • The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) warns consumers about hidden drowning hazards for small children in and around the home. Recent data show that a third as many children under age 5 (an average of about 115 annually) drown from other hazards.