11 ways to keep your kids safe on the water this summer

Jun 7 2017, 5:43 am

Our beaches and lakes are perfect for your kids to cool off with their friends.

But how do you keep them safe while they still have fun in the sun?

It’s a startling but true fact: drowning is one of the leading causes of preventable death in children. So before you hit the pool or beach this summer, ensure you are aware of the dangers.

Daily Hive has teamed up with YMCA of Greater Vancouver to compile a list of 11 ways that you can keep your kids safe in and around water.

  1. Always supervise children when they are near or in the water: in the pool or at the beach.
  2. Be careful when swimming near strong currents in the ocean. It only takes a second to be swept away.
  3. Do not allow children to dive in headfirst in water unless they are properly trained and the water is deep enough.
  4. Ensure non-swimmers are always wearing a PFD or lifejacket when near or in the water.
  5. Never leave a child unattended in the bathtub. Drowning can happen in just two inches of water.
  6. Make sure children play with care and understand the dangers. Even the friendliest dunking game can be risky.
  7. Floatation devices aren’t a replacement for supervision. Make sure an adult is watching at all times.
  8. Be proactive and get trained on First Aid and CPR.
  9. If you have a swimming pool, make sure your children cannot get into the pool area by having proper fencing and a childproof gate.
  10. Lifejackets have weight limits. Make sure your lifejacket or PFD is comfortable and light, fits snug and does not ride above your ears.
  11. Make sure the entire family learns to swim. There is no substitute for swimming ability.

The YMCA believes learning to swim is a critical life skill and that’s why they’re offering free water safety seminars on Saturday, June 10, 17 and 24. You don’t have to be a YMCA member to take part either.

Just by signing up, you’ll get instruction from a highly qualified YMCA instructor, learn essential water safety practices, and survival swimming skills.

The classes are available for both parents and children and have been designed to help them gain confidence and the skills to get water safe. Afterwards, each participant will get a skill assessment card of their swim level.

For more information, visit YMCA online. And to get involved, sign up at your nearest YMCA membership desk or call your local branch.

Langara Family YMCA

Location: 282 West 49th Avenue
Contact: 604-689-9622

Robert Lee YMCA

Location: 955 Burrard Street
Contact: 604-689-9622

Tong Louie Family YMCA

Locations: 14988 57 Avenue, Surrey
Contact: 604-575-9622

Chilliwack Family YMCA

Location: 45844 Hocking Avenue, Chilliwack
Contact: 604-792-3371

YMCA water safety seminars

When: June 10, 17, and 24
Where: YMCA locations across Vancouver
Price: Free – sign up through your local YMCA

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