14 Water Safety Tips For Adults and Children

The summer months bring with them extra warm weather and water on the Space Coast, with adults and children alike hopping into pools and oceans, swimming and playing for hours on end. While swimming safety should be a priority year-round in our neck of the beach, during this time of year we welcome more swimming and water activity due to the ideal weather and water temperatures and increase in family and friends visiting.

Here are 14 tips to make this popular pastime safer for everyone excited to swim, splash and play.

1.    Supervise:
Constantly check on not only young children but adults and elderly swimmers as well. Anyone is capable
at any time of getting into a dangerous situation in water,
not just children.

2.    Take Lessons:
Make sure children have had proper swimming lessons before entering the water. If they are still learning they will need to have…

3.    Bring Proper Gear:
Water wings, a life jacket, a boogie board, and other floatable devices are imperative for children in the water, as well as teens and adults in many cases. Each person needs to have a lifejacket if you go on a boat ride, it is illegal otherwise and ensures safety for various scenarios.

4.    Install Barriers:
Anyone can slip into a pool, and this can prove extremely dangerous for children. Make sure there are barriers, locked gates, etc., blocking children from having easy access to get into various bodies of water, such as a pool, a pond, lake or even access on the beach to the ocean.

5.    Avoid Rough Water:
Use your better judgment and do not, or allow children to, swim when waters are rough.
6.    Don’t Panic:
If caught in a riptide, don’t panic – take deep breaths to calm yourself. Don’t try to swim back to shore as you will become exhausted; instead swim parallel, across the current.

7.    Swim by Lifeguards:
Whether at the beach or a public pool, lifeguards are there to protect swimmers, and are able to see things you can’t while in the water. Pay attention to flags and warnings about currents and dangerous wildlife sightings, such as sharks.

8.    Be Mindful of Marine Life:
The ocean and river are the habitat of many different fish and marine animals, some of which are endangered and carry legal consequences for disturbing. Be careful of dangerous predators such as sharks, stingrays and alligators, and at the same time be mindful not to disturb the habitation of marine life that are not dangerous, and that goes for plants as well.

9.    Be Mindful of Weather:
Do not swim during lighting or bad weather, and if it looks like bad weather is approaching, get out of the water as soon as possible.

10.    Enter Feet First:
Diving or jumping into shallow water can be extremely hazardous, and oftentimes you cannot tell just how deep the water really is. Play it safe and always enter the water feet first.

11.    Swim Sober:
Alcohol thins your blood, so drinking in the sun and swimming is extra dangerous; you can become dehydrated and weak on top of having cloudy judgment. That being said…

12.    Stay Hydrated:
Not staying hydrated may cause a cramp, rendering you immobile in the water. Drink plenty of fluids, especially water, as the sun can take its toll.

13.    Wear Sunscreen and Reapply Often:
The sun can be brutal on your skin in the summer months especially, so make sure you wear plenty of sunscreen as you will still get burned being in the water. The sunscreen will also wash off during your swimming sessions, so you will need to reapply as needed.

14.    Be Prepared for Emergencies:
Knowing CPR can save lives, especially if it comes to a drowning incident. Have a charged cell phone with you in case you need to make an emergency call and have handy a first aid kit and water bottles.