Water Safety Week

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From June 1-8, let’s bring awareness to the dangers associated with swimming in order to prevent possible accidents.

Did you know that every year, approximately 520 Canadians die unnecessarily in inadvertent water-related fatalities? A high percentage of the victim toll involve young children, making them especially at risk when it comes to drowning accidents. Indeed, 75% of deaths amongst children under the age of 10 occur when there is an absence of effective adult supervision. While the ability to swim is significant, swimming skills alone aren’t always enough to save a life. Learning water safety is key to avoiding an emergency in or on the water.

Here is a list of precautionary measures to help prevent possible accidents and to promote water safety:

Never leave children around a body of water without adult supervision. Whether it’s in a pool, in the bathtub, or at the beach, children should always be actively supervised – even if they can swim. 

Always jump feet first in pools and lakes, avoid diving.

Be careful with water currents. Even expert swimmers face danger when getting caught in strong currents.

Use and wear floating devices. While boating, always make sure that every passenger is wearing a life jacket, regardless of their age or swimming experience. Children and inexperienced swimmers should also wear swimming support or buoys when they are near water.

Don’t drive a boat without the appropriate license and don’t drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Make sure to have all the needed boating safety instruments on board before leaving the dock: watertight flashlight and/or Canadian approved flares, sound-signaling device, manual propelling device, water pump, and a Class 5 BC fire extinguisher.

Be careful when visiting beaches without lifeguard supervision. If you decide to swim regardless, stay close to the shore.

Make sure to visit the Canadian Red Cross website at www.redcross.ca for more information, or to sign up for swimming lessons and water safety training. 

Stay safe!

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