Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Summer Safety

Okay-- 4th of July is tomorrow and I JUST can't help myself. In real life, I am a pediatric ER nurse and summer always brings a unique set of injures. Drownings increase. This is a completely preventable injury.

It's not unusual to have a child who suffered a drowning (you die) or near-drowning (got resuscitated) on a holiday. Adults get together and there are lots of above ground pools around. Adults are drinking. Adults assume their child is an adequate swimmer after passing swimming lessons (this is not necessarily true.) Adults assume the older kids will watch for the younger ones.

Lesson One: Don't assume.

I'll share a personal story. We were with friends in Kansas for a 4th of July BBQ many years ago. They had fashioned a plastic slide to a large above ground pool and all the children were having a blast. My oldest at the time was two.

Knowing what I know-- I parked myself right next to the pool with a soda. Responsible watching people. Sure enough, my daughter goes down the slide and when she hits the pool, she can't gain traction and goes under.

There are several older kids with her in the pool (middle school age) and they happily splash as she is drowning right next to them.

I shudder to think what would have happened had I not been right there.

Remember, above ground pools should be treated like regular swimming pools. They should be fenced off. The fence should not include access from the home.

Lesson Two: Learn the facts. 

Everyone: Please READ this article: Drowning Doesn't Look Like Drowning.

Lesson Three: Know it CAN happen to you or your child. 

Have a SAFE and responsible holiday.

Please-- I don't want to see you in my ER.


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