The dry season is fast returning to Nigeria, and the warm weather will force many to turn to the water to cool off. However, recent events have shown that children should never be allowed to go to the swimming pools unsupervised. There are swimming pool safety rules for children, particularly babies and toddlers, who are more vulnerable to the hazards.
Drowning can happen fast, and it is one of the leading causes of death for children between the age of 1 to 4. Yes, swimming is fun and can keep your child occupied for hours. But it’s important not to let that child swim without supervision. Therefore, this article will discuss swimming pool safety guidelines not just for kids but adults as well.
What is swimming pool safety?
Swimming pool safety is guidelines and measures put in place to prevent or reduce risks of swimming. In simple terms, it is a rule for public and private pools to ensure your health and safety.
10 swimming pool safety guidelines
1. Don’t run around or near a swimming pool
This is the number one swimming pool safety rule. Don’t run around the swimming area. It may seem like fun, especially during an outing. But the pool place is always wet and slippery, and you may lose your balance and injure yourself. If care is not taken, you may possibly drown in the process, depending on the severity of your injury and how well you swim. Don’t do it. Instead, just walk and teach your children too!
2. Obey pool rules
Whenever you visit a public or private pool, always check out the pool rules first before anything else. This is important for your safety. Of course, many swimming pools, particularly public pools, have different instructions. You must make sure you obey them to a T. For instance, many pools don’t allow toys or food around the area. It’s for your own good, and knowing someone who knows someone in high places will not save you if you end up in trouble because you chose to ignore the rules.
3. Don’t swim or allow your child to swim unsupervised
We all woke up to the tragic news about what happened to the Adelekes on October 31, 2022. It’s sad and every parent’s nightmare. This is why it shouldn’t even occur to you to swim alone or allow your child, or any child for that matter, anywhere near a swimming pool alone. Supervision is key to avoiding swimming accidents. Make sure someone is there supervising the whole swimming process. And for God’s sake, put down that phone, so you can concentrate on your supervision!
5. Don’t dive into a shallow end
A family friend recently lost his teenage son when he went to a hotel to swim with his friends. According to the friends, the boy dived into the pool and hit his head on the concrete at the bottom of the pool because, unknown to him, the pool was shallow. Diving into a shallow pool has severe consequences. If you’re lucky, you may end up with a serious head injury. If not, let’s say God forbid untimely death.
6. No rough play in the pool
Playing in the pool is fun. But that doesn’t mean you should be rough about it. I know you want to be another WWE superstar, but please take it out of the pool. Jumping on others or holding them down underwater in the name of playing is a no-no. Also, if you’re lovers, don’t emulate what you see in movies. Carry your rough romance out of that pool.
7. Don’t swim when it’s raining or during a storm
Water attracts lightning, and you really don’t want to be in the pool during a rainstorm. Meanwhile, lightning can strike suddenly even if there is no rain. So watch out for the weather; if it’s cloudy, come out of the swimming pool and take cover. Make sure you stay for at least 30 minutes after the last lightning before entering the pool again. My advice? Just call it a day of swimming. The pool isn’t running away. You can go back another time.
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8. Install a wall or cover the pool
If you have a child around you, then it’s best to install a fence or wall or cover the swimming pool with the appropriate pool cover. Don’t say you’ll be careful. No parent or caregiver can supervise a child hundred per cent of the time. Children, especially babies and toddlers, are careless wanderers. One moment they are with you; another moment, they have disappeared to another location. To avoid stories that touch, barricade the pool area so they won’t wander inside when no one is looking.
9. Use pool safety equipment appropriately
Don’t use pool safety equipment anyhow as toys. These have been provided for your safety, and misusing them may spell doom when you need them most. As a parent, you must ensure the equipment is properly used and maintained for next time.
10. Learn how to respond in an emergency
Accidents can happen even after following the rules. So it’s important to be ready for any emergency. This is part of why no one should, especially a child, be left unsupervised at the pool. Swimming accidents like drowning can happen in seconds. So, everyone should learn how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Also, always have a first aid kit around in case of any emergency. Most importantly, your phone should have enough battery to make calls or send urgent text messages. These are things you know and have available because they can save someone’s life. Don’t take it for granted.
Swimming pool safety is a must-know information for everyone. Even if you’ve never been near a swimming pool before or detest swimming, you should learn the rules all the same. For parents that have pools in their homes, while barricading the pools, also ensure they are tidy and as germ-free as possible. Don’t allow anyone that has stomach problems to go anywhere near the pool, and also ensure the cleaning chemicals are safe, so you don’t have body reactions. Stay safe!