On hot summer days kids love to swim in the pool, it can be lots of fun but can also be very dangerous. Some of those dangers can include the risk of drowning, receiving injuries from diving the wrong way, and from slips or falls around the pool. The second- leading cause of unintentional injury-related deaths for children ages 1 to 14 in the U. S. is drowning. For every one child that drowns, there are another four children that receive some type of medical treatment in an emergency department for submersion-related injuries. The most shocking part is that a lot of these deaths and injuries occur when children are under the supervision of an adult.
Diving into a pool can also be very dangerous and if you don’t dive right you could end up with some very serious injuries like paralysis. There are around 16,000 people under the age of 16 hospitalized every year because of a diving injury; one in five of those teens end up suffering a severe spinal cord injury as a result. According to the American Institutes for Research, 30.8% of all aquatic-related accidents take place in a pool rather than a natural body of water. Many diving injuries are not linked to dives from a diving board; they are linked to someone who dives into shallow water.
Another danger related to pools is the risk of entrapment or evisceration in pool drains. The risks associated with entrapment or evisceration prompted the passage of the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act in 2007. This act, which mandates that certain types of pool drain covers, be installed in order to eliminate or reduce the risk of entrapment.
Some safety guidelines to follow are:
When it comes to diving: get rid of diving boards and don’t dive in shallow water
Have a multi-layered system of protection in place: Make sure all doors leading from the home to the pool have alerts or alarms that sound when the door is opened
Have appropriate fencing: The pool should have a fence at least 4 feet tall surrounding it
Add an alarm: The alarm system goes off when a person enters the water. Some different examples of pool alarms can be found at www.poolalarms.com
Have a motorized cover for you pool: Some motorized pool covers can hold the weight of someone if they step on it
If your child or a child you know has been injured call our Toledo, Ohio child injury attorneys at toll free 800.637.8170 for a free case evaluation or to request you FREE copy of Little Kids, Big accidents: The Ultimate Guide to Child Injury Cases in Ohio.