Portable swimming pools, just like in-ground pools, can pose serious drowning risks to young children, warned researchers at the National Children’s Hospital’s Center for Injury Research and Policy in Columbus, Ohio. A new study from the center shows that about every five days, a child drowns in a portable swimming pool in the United States. The Hospital used data from 2001-2009 from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, where there were 209 drowning deaths and 35 near-drownings in children under the age of 12. Out of these, 94% were under 5 and 56% were boys. As for supervision, more than 40% of the drownings occurred when the children were supervised, 39% occurred without any adult supervision, and 18% occurred because of the lapse of supervision. Alarmingly, around 40% of the drownings happened in a shallow wading pool.
These statistics highlight the need for increased safety measures regarding portable swimming pools. Many portable swimming pools are inflatable, inexpensive, and easy to assemble. Consequently, many parents do not regard them as a serious risk to their children like deeper in-ground pools and, like the statistics show, do not supervise their children. However, it only takes “a couple of inches and a few minutes” for a child to drown, warns Dr. Gary A. Smith, director of the Center.
Safe Kids, a non-profit organization dedicated to safety awareness for children, has promoted a pool-safety concept known as “Lock, Look, and Learn.” Parents should put up a fence at least 4 feet high around the pool and keep it locked unless an adult is present. While in the pool area, parents should watch their children at all times. The supervising parents should also know how to swim and to be able to instruct their children on how to swim at an early age. Also, parents should be able to know how to respond to an emergency, such as using rescue equipment, calling 911, and performing CPR.
The qualified swimming pool accident attorneys at McIntyre Law asks all parents to create a safe swimming environment for your children. There is no better way to beat the Oklahoma heat than a dip in the pool.