Prevent Drownings

Prevent Drownings during Long-Weekend Season

Long weekend season is in full swing. Planning on visiting the beach or spending the day around the pool? Follow our safety measures for preventing drownings:

 

  1. Presence of lifeguards. Lifeguards are trained to spot swimmers on the verge of drowning and act quickly to save lives. Certified lifeguards have been trained and have the expertise to perform CPR. They can be the difference between life and death when spotting swimmers on the verge of drowning.

 

  1. Usage of certified flotation devices. Life jackets and other flotation devices ensure you stay afloat in the water even if you are unconscious or unable to swim, making them a valuable aid in and around the water.

 

  1. Recognize and avoid strong currents. If you’re at the beach, be ready to spot these common rip current warning signs:
    1. A narrow channel of particularly choppy water
    2. Water with a noticeably different color than the water around it
    3. Irregular wave patterns
    4. A line of debris or seaweed moving steadily out to sea
  1. Don’t panic if you find yourself in a strong current. In the unlikely event that you are caught in a strong current, rather than trying to fight the current, instead, turn 90 degrees and swim parallel to the shore as hard as you can. Since most rip currents are active only in relatively narrow channels, eventually, you’ll get out of the rip current and into calmer waters.

 

  1. If you feel yourself start to lose control, tread water or float. Most people’s natural reaction to the sensation of beginning to drown is to fight as hard as they can to keep their head high above the water. A much better idea to tread water or use a floating technique to conserve energy so that you can make a try for the shore or signal for help.
    1. To tread water, turn yourself upright in the water and make an in-and-out sweeping motion with your arms to stabilize your upper body. As you do this, make an easy, bicycle-like kicking motion to keep yourself afloat.
    2. If you’re completely out of energy, using a survival float can allow you to rest in the water. Turn prone (face-down) and spread your limbs out wide, using only minimal movements to keep yourself afloat. Lift your head when you need to breathe.
    3. Keep in mind that you only need to keep your mouth a little out of the water to be able to breathe — fighting to stay high in the water is usually a waste of energy.

 

  1. Don’t use drugs or alcohol. Being in water while intoxicated by a substance impairs motors skills and judgement. If you’re not sober, do not enter a swimming pool or go swimming at the beach or in a lake.
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