With the recent warm weather, there has been an unfortunate increase in the number of drowning deaths in Massachusetts,…10 in the last month. The incidents range from swimming pools to public ponds and beaches and unauthorized swim areas. These incidents highlight the importance of safety when participating in summer activities. Before you cool off with a little swim, please keep these swimming safety tips in mind.
Don’t Swim in Unauthorized Areas
Many ponds, reservoirs, and swim holes in Massachusetts are clearly marked with “No Swimming” signs. Yet, every year, we hear about injuries and drowning deaths in these areas. Signs seem to do little to deter swimmers looking to cool off in the summer heat. Many of these locations prohibit swimming for safety reasons. Thus, the first of our swimming safety tips is to heed the warning signs and avoid swimming in unauthorized areas. Be sure to discuss this with your children as well.
Swim When Lifeguards Are on Duty
Even in authorized swim areas, lifeguards are present only during specific hours of the day. It is important to swim only during those times. When problems occur, response times are critical to survival. Having a lifeguard on duty improves the chances of a quick reaction to a swimmer in danger. Therefore, this is one of the most important swimming safety tips, especially if you have children.
Never Swim Alone
Even the most experienced swimmers can run into trouble out in the water. Thus, it’s best not to swim alone. Swimming with a partner (or in groups) ensures that there’s someone to help, or to call for help, when you need assistance.
Never Leave Kids Unattended
It’s so easy to get distracted as a parent. Whether it’s a phone call, chatting with another parent, or another child needing your help, you may take your eyes off your children just long enough to miss something critical. When in or near the water, make sure an adult is next to your children at all times. Avoid watching from a distance as you may be too far to react in time. Never trust another child to watch your children. Additionally, if your children cannot swim, make sure they are wearing a life vest. Talk with your children about getting permission before going into the water and not wandering off on their own. By teaching them good safety habits and paying close attention yourself, you can keep your children safe as they enjoy water activities.
More on Swimming Safety Tips for Massachusetts Residents
Swimming is such a fun summer activity for people of all ages, but it’s also a very dangerous one. It’s easy to get complacent around the water. Be sure to remain vigilant when it comes to safety and keep the above swimming safety tips for Massachusetts residents in mind. We wish your family a happy and safe summer!