When the temperature heats up, all you can think about is swimming at the pool or even taking a dip in one of the many rivers and lakes around St. Louis. Just remember: Where there’s water, there’s risk.
That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t jump in (carefully) and have some fun with family and friends. It just means you should keep these safety tips in mind any time you take a dip:
- Don’t go it alone. Swim only in designated areas, with a lifeguard if possible, and use the buddy system – even adults shouldn’t swim when no one else is around. As for children, they should never be left unattended in or near the water or supervised by another child.
- Mind the rules. If an area forbids diving or is closed for swimming, that means it’s unsafe to do so. Save yourself a trip to the hospital and follow all posted rules and warnings.
- Keep away from drains. In a pool or spa, a drain’s powerful suction can trap children and adults. Be sure everyone knows to keep their distance. The same goes for riptides and currents if you’re in an open body of water.
- Know how to respond. When someone is missing, especially a child, always check the water first. Learn CPR and other skills that can save lives.
- Use common sense. Don’t use drugs or alcohol during water activities. Do have life jackets for inexperienced swimmers, and keep plenty of sunscreen and water on hand to help everyone beat the heat.
- Alert a lifeguard if you see someone struggling. Alternately, you could throw the person a floating object or reach out with a long object.
With a little caution, and a whole lot of supervision, you can help ensure your day at the pool or lake goes swimmingly. Have fun getting wet!