As the last school bells rang at the beginning of June, thus began the start of pool season for many families. Whether it be swim lessons or a fun excuse to play in the sun, parents and children alike will be flocking to their local or personal pools all summer long. However, with fun also comes the potential for mishaps ranging anywhere from mildly irritating to seriously dangerous. Follow these quick tips to ensure you get the most out of your summer trips to the pool, all while saving money and staying safe.
1. Do Your Research
Before you pack the sunscreen and buckle the car-seats, research the pool(s) in your surrounding area. Often times, previous visitors will leave online reviews on factors such as fun, pricing, safety, and general upkeep of amenities. Reading these reviews may also help you in determining whether or not the pool has an established lifeguard on duty. Pools that do not employ a lifeguard on duty at all times are best to avoid. If possible, try to choose a pool whose reviews amount to a general consensus of harboring a safe and family-friendly environment. You may also find coupons or discounts.
2. If Swimming at a Backyard/Personal Pool, Establish a Set of Rules
Head to your local craft store and put together an official board of rules or instructions for your pool. Things you may want to establish are simple instructions such as No Running/Diving/Pushing, No Swimming w/o an Adult, No Dunking, Clean Up After Yourself, or Nobody of a Certain Height/Age Allowed in the Deep End. The nice thing about utilizing a pool at home as opposed to a public pool is the flexibility it allows in creating your own, personal safety instructions. The downfall, however, is the lack of lifeguard precautions; which ultimately leads us into our next tip...
3. Learn CPR
Anyone thinking of installing a home pool should first and foremost certify themselves in CPR. It is ideal to have at least one CPR certified adult present at all times when people are utilizing the pool. While gaining a certification may seem like too much work or simply inconvenient, it is actually a very easily accessible certification. Organizations like the American Red Cross and local hospitals and fire departments usually offer CPR courses. Once you receive your certification, regularly make sure that it is up to date. CPR procedure changes as time and technology advance, so it is always a great idea to make sure you are up to date on the latest and greatest life-saving procedures.
4. Beware of the Sun
The sun, while a beloved feature of summer days, also has a dangerous side. Before heading to the pool, make sure you have packed a sufficient SPF and amount of sunscreen. Apply consistently throughout the day, depending on how long you plan on being outside and the amount of time you plan on spending directly in the water. Some sunscreen brands are not waterproof, and will typically wash off as you wade in and out of the pool throughout the day. It is never a bad idea to pack an umbrella, or even a hat, to keep the sun at bay. For those with young children, it is also important to note that infants should almost always be kept out of direct sunlight. Try to find a spot in the shade.
5. Stay Away From Drains
Try your best to keep away from pool drains and suction outlets, and especially those that are not properly covered. Things such as jewelry, swimsuits, hair, and even limbs are always at risk of being caught or sucked into drains and outlets. Avoid playing and swimming near these hazards. Do not enter a pool that has inadequately covered drains and outlets. Even if the drains and outlets are properly covered, do not enter the pool without first locating the emergency vacuum shutoff.
All in all, it is never too late to brush up on your pool safety and make sure everyone in the family has an enjoyable, safe experience at the pool this summer. Tag us in your pool pics on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/C21Affiliated/.