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Drowning at home

​Many of us have the misconception that drowning only occurs at swimming pools or beaches, but are you aware that children can drown in as little as a few inches of water? Drowning can take place in your own home, and it can happen very quickly. So eliminate any potential drowning hazards in the household. Here are some tips on how to make your home safe!

  • Do not leave your child alone in the bathroom, especially in the bathtub, even for a moment. Take your child along with you if you need to answer the phone or door.
  • Keep pails and basins in your bathroom covered or turned over when not in use. Out of curiosity, children may climb into a pail or basin of water and drown.
  • Children depend on adults for their safety. Learn basic life-saving techniques to save a drowning child. Before the ambulance arrives, doing the right thing can mean the difference between life and death for a child.

Drowning in the swimming pool

Swimming can provide a day of great enjoyment and a workout for the whole family. However, drowning is the leading cause of injury death for young children ages 1 to 4. Here are some safety precautions that one should take when at the pool.

  • ​Always accompany your children when they are swimming, and have an adult within arm’s length of your child in the pool to provide prompt help if needed. Keep an eye on them and don’t be distracted by your phone, electronic device or magazine etc.
  • Make sure that the water level does not exceed your child’s chest level when he is standing upright in the pool. Always check the water depth and temperature, and look out for underwater hazards. 
  • Floats and other swimming aids help prevent accidents, so be sure that your children use them when swimming. Do check that these aids are in good working condition and fully inflate them before use.
  • If the weather turns bad, leave the pool immediately. Do not wait until you get a signal from the lifeguard.
  • Take note of the locations of the lifeguards and rescue aids. Make sure your child knows them too.
  • Ensure home pools have a four-sided fencing of at least 1.2m tall that may be latched to prevent your child from entering the pool unsupervised.  Drain the tub immediately after use, keep toilet lids closed at all times. 
  • Supervise children who are near the pool to prevent accidental unsupervised entry into the pool. Familiarize yourself with CPR and learn to recognize signs of distress.
  • Always supervise your child at all times, whether at home, at the playground or in and near the pool.

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