9 Memorial Day Weekend Water Safety Tips

Photo by USCG

Post Updated From Original Publish Date of May 21, 2014

This Memorial Day weekend, many families will be spending time around swimming pools, lakes and beaches.  Before heading out we recommend reading through the following statistics and safety tips to assist in doing your part to prevent accidents.

According to the Children's Safety Zone, 40 water related incidents have already occurred this year from Januay 1, 2016 - May 20, 2016.  Of those incidents there has been 19 deaths with 5 being children. Many of these drownings occurred in swimming pools. Drowning is preventable and there is no excuse to not practice safety around water, no matter what age.

We have some tips to stay safe on the water this weekend thanks to Safe Kids USA’s article on safe boating week.

  • 1. Designate a “water watcher”. This person should be someone who will pay attention to children who are playing in the water with 100 percent of their attention.
  • 2. Wear life jackets. Be sure that the life jackets fit properly and are fastened securely.
  • 3. Encourage swimming lessons. Although knowing how to swim can’t prevent drowning 100 percent, it is an important skill for both children and adult to learn and feel confident with.
  • 4. Swim in designated areas. Swimming in open water has many unpredictable factors and avoiding this can keep families safe from harm.
  • 5. Learn CPR. Knowing CPR and how to use rescue equipment are important to know in case of an emergency. The American Red Cross offers CPR classes. Even if you have taken a CPR class in the past, it is a good idea to renew your certification.
  • 6. Take a boat safety course. The US Coast Guard offers boat safety courses that anyone who is operating or riding in a boat should take. If your children are going out on a friend’s boat, be sure to verify that the boat’s operator has taken a course and fully understands the rules.
  • 7. Do not allow children to operate water crafts. Jet skis and other water crafts are not intended for children and parents should be sure to enforce this.
  • 8. Prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide can accumulate around boats, so exercise caution and be aware of this. Carbon monoxide detectors are also good to have, and will alert you if there are dangerous levels of exhaust fumes.
  • 9. Don’t drink alcohol around water. Many boating accidents happen because of alcohol. The driver should not drink alcohol under any conditions, and the passengers should refrain as well to prevent distracting the driver. These 9 tips will help you and your families to stay safe around water this weekend and throughout the summer months.

Remember that you can never be too prepared in the event of an emergency. We hope that everyone has a safe Memorial Day weekend!