It’s a leisurely summer afternoon. A young girl plays in her backyard pool, while her family and their friends are distracted by music, conversation, and smells from the grill. The adults seem unaware that their inattentiveness could cause tragedy at any moment.
Everyone assumes that someone else is paying attention to the kids in the pool, or maybe that the kids can handle their own in the water. Suddenly and nearly silently, this young girl slips under the water. With little sound and barely any splashing, no one seems to notice.
The Epidemic of Unintentional Drowning
Each day in the U.S., approximately 10 people die from unintentional drowning. Even more heartbreaking: Two of the 10 are children no older than 14.
Drowning ranks as the fifth leading cause of unintentional injury and death in the country. Consider these facts:
Nonfatal drowning injuries can cause extreme brain damage and serious long-term disabilities, including memory problems, loss of basic functioning (otherwise known as being in a permanent vegetative state), and learning disabilities.
May is National Water Safety Month
With so many sobering statistics, it is easy to see the importance of water safety. The Association of Pool and Spa Professionals coordinates this annual awareness campaign in partnership with the American Red Cross, National Recreation and Park Association, and World Waterpark Association.
Their aim is to encourage safer water practices to prevent drownings and water-related injuries.
Now in its 9th year, National Water Safety Month has garnered the attention of the governors of every state; each signed water safety proclamations in recent years.
Olympic swimmers have also joined the cause, bringing attention to the importance of swimming lessons and public education regarding safe practices for adults and kids.
Water Safety Tips
These National Water Safety Month tips from can help keep you and your family safer in and around the water:
How You Can Help
You can spread the word about National Water Safety Month:
National Water Safety Month provides a timely reminder that many water-related injures and tragedy can be prevented. Take action today.