The Pool - study finds most children drown while supervised - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 60 Old 05-31-2004, 12:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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For all of you with a pool, or heading towards one for these summer months I thought this was an important link

Some excerpts are:
Quote:
But recent research from the National SAFE KIDS Campaign shows that nearly 9 out of 10 children between ages 1 and 14 who drowned were under supervision when they died. The study defined supervision as being in someone's care, not necessarily in direct line of sight.
and more importantly...

Quote:
Adequate supervision means not sitting poolside reading, socializing with guests, chatting on the phone, operating the grill or listening to music with a headset. Such distractions are deadly, child trauma experts said.
and lastly this statistic is shocking!
Quote:
The SAFE KIDS study examined data from 496 child-drowning deaths from 2000 and 2001 from 17 states and found that 88 percent of the drowning victims were under supervision.
Watching means WATCHING!!!!
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#2 of 60 Old 05-31-2004, 01:51 AM
 
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Oh, I totally belive this. DS was at my mother's house last summer (I wasn't there) and they were in the garden, or so mom thought. She looked behind and happened to glance at the pool and he'd climbed up the ladder and he was ready to hop in : . He just turned one and it took no time for him to make his way across the yard and up to the pool. Right then and there my father dismantled the ladder and put it away and they take it out when they need it (it's a tall free standing pool and there's no way to get in unless you have the ladder). I FREAKED when I heard it. You can't take your eyes off a child of any age if there's a pool around!!!
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#3 of 60 Old 05-31-2004, 02:59 AM
 
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I was 5 feet away from my 4 yo in a pool with other kids & adult friends when I looked over & he was face down, floating. We pumped water out of his lungs. He told me later he wanted to breathe underwater, so he tried it. All within the space of 30 seconds. For real.

I don't think he would have drowned with me so close, but this is an example of what can happen. I can't imagine if I had been in the bathroom or gone to get a towel or anything. I have a huge healthy respect for any water now.
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#4 of 60 Old 05-31-2004, 03:14 AM
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I'm still convinced that Rain saved another child's life in the pool when she was 4. We were at a friend's house and there were 3 or 4 moms and maybe a dozen kids swimming, ranging in ag from 3 or 4 to young teens. All except Rain and another boy her age were pretty strong swimmers, and she was on the steps and he was on a raft floating in the shallow end. Two of the moms were on the steps chatting, and I was standing near the pool. All of the sudden Rain pointed over at the raft and started yelling "Danger! Danger! Help!"... no one seemed to notice her except for me - you know how you're always so tuned in to your childs voice, even with a dozen kids laughing and shouting? I looked over and the little boy had slipped off the raft and was on the bottom of the pool, just laying there. Everyone was oblivious, laughing and talking and playing, and Rain was there pointing and yelling and I looked around for a couple seconds and then just jumped in (and I wasn't wearing a swimsuit) and dove down and got him. He was okay, Rain had actually seen him slip off and started yelling right then so he'd been there maybe 10 seconds, but he wasn't splashing or moving or anything, just lying there.

No one else that day ever acted like anything major had happened, it was like he had slipped off but no big deal, he would be fine... but I think that if Rain hadn't happened to see him go over, he could easily have gone unnoticed for 5 and 10 minutes, and drowned. And her was surrounded by people...

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#5 of 60 Old 05-31-2004, 03:31 AM
 
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I have a pool and was a lifeguard for a few years, so I'd like to share some tips for water saftey:

1) 2 hands and 2 eyes on the baby at all times!
If they can't swim, hold onto them I've seen parents holding onto their kids on a hip while talking to someone and the childs head under water...pay attention people!

2) toys in the pool - if you aren't using them, take them out!
Floating toys, balls, noodles, chairs...anything that you use in the pool..if you aren't using it, take it out of the pool. One 3 yo drowned because no one saw that he was under a floating object and therefore no one could see that he needed help until it was too late.

3) time out - let kids rest every hour, even if they are good swimmers...
15 minutes out of the pool is good...yes, they can keep their feet in...

4) watch for blue lips...and make them get out!
again, 15 minutes out of the pool, wrapped up, in the sun, something to eat.

5) NO DIVING in less than 6 feet
if you need explaining for this one, you shouldn't be supervising kids in the pool

6) NO RUNNING!!!
if I had a dollar for everytime I said this one! kids can slip and fall into the water, hitting the ground and side of the pool on the way in. Not good

7) Don't trust floaties to do the trick
or inner-tubes or even those bathing suits that have the built in floats...if your children can't swim, refer to safety tip #1


you'll have more fun if you stay safe...enjoy!!!
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#6 of 60 Old 06-02-2004, 11:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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bumping this up to keep mamas informed.

thanks nates mommy for the great info!!
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#7 of 60 Old 06-02-2004, 11:47 AM
 
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Natesmommy, what about tips for wading pools? Our town pool has a huge area which shelves from nothing to about 4 feet, joined to a regular deep olympic pool... if I'm supervising the little ones in the shallow part, I usually just let them frolic where I can see them - but I do let them get further away than arms length... what would you recommend based on your experience? anyone?
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#8 of 60 Old 06-02-2004, 12:27 PM
 
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All it takes is a mouthful to drown a child. I lived in south florida for 23 years, and children drowned all to often.

I live in colorado now, and join a local pool every year. and every day that we go (and i take the kids almost every day), i see toddlers, small kids, apre-schoolers in the "baby pool"....the pool is shaped like a capital Z, with the bottom part of the Z the baby-non swimmer part. the water maybe comes up to the middle of my shin (i am 5'10), and closer to the steps, its a bit shallower. All the moms get the choice chairs right in front, which of course i want as well. however, they sunbathe, read and coffee clatch while their kids are unsupervised. the pool has life guards, but the baby pool is the responsibility of the kids parents....so i sit on the edge of that pool, feet in the water, for hours while my child plays. i cant tell you how many times i have had to pull a child up and out that has taken in too much water. i swear, i should be on the payroll.

So sorry for going on a tangent, and its most likely because of the dead kids i have seen working in an ER, but i agree. you could be right there, reading your magazine and your child could drown, or choke.
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#9 of 60 Old 06-05-2004, 11:32 PM
 
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Goodcents, I wanted to thank you for having the link to this thread in your siggy line.

Thanks everyone for sharing your knowledge about water safety. This was a nice refresher / reminder.

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#10 of 60 Old 06-08-2004, 07:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks punk princess - i hope it helps someone out there!
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#11 of 60 Old 06-08-2004, 08:19 PM
 
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The study defined supervision as being in someone's care, not necessarily in direct line of sight.
I don't get this part -- are there really that many kids that are not "in someone's care" at all times???
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#12 of 60 Old 06-08-2004, 10:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes Rosemary I think there are many children who are not in someone's care at all times.

OT but remind me of a conversation I heard about a mom whom I met this weekend. Goes like.....

Person "Why is your newborn baby crying"

New mom "Because she has got to learn when we eat dinner she is not going to get what she wants." :

Is the child being supervised? According to this study, yes the child is.

Is the child being cared for? H**L no - not in my opinion.
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#13 of 60 Old 06-09-2004, 11:31 AM
 
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I have had friends and neighbors offer to take my daughter to the pool along with their children and I always say no. Sometimes I've wondered if I'm being overprotective. But I saw a horrid tape on 20/20 or some similar show that showed a pool where a boy drowned, and you can see clearly on the security tape how his body is just immobile under the water for five minutes and no one is noticing! I wish information such as what's in this thread could be broadcast on local TV news channels at the beginning of every summer. Every drowning is a preventable death!
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#14 of 60 Old 06-09-2004, 12:49 PM
 
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I took my DD to the pool for the first time ever 2 weeks ago. I stood right beside her while she waded and explored in the baby pool - the maximum depth in that pool is 1 FOOT - it came up just past her waist. Well, I saw somebody I knew & just waved hi & watched for maybe 10 seconds to see if this woman was coming over, and in this time DD saw a pool toy floating by and was reaching far into the water to grab it up and she lost her balance. I don't think she'd be able to right herself if I hadn't noticed her & grabbed her - she was literally 6 inches away from me, and I looked away for just the tiniest bit. I was really trying to be consciously cautious and aware of where she was all the time.

I learned my lesson right there - it can happen soooo quickly!
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#15 of 60 Old 06-09-2004, 01:08 PM
 
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I believe this too. My dd almost drown yesterday and I was RIGHT THERE! I was feeding my one twin and was watching her in the wading pool. Looked down at him for a second and looked back at her and BOOM! She was floating face first in the water. Scared the crapola outta me! Thankfully I had neighbors around and I yelled for them to grab her because I still had the one baby in my arms, my stroller blocking my way (so totally my fault and I wasn't even thinking! I feel horrible!) and they got her out and she was fine. I actually think she was trying to swim on her own because she pretends to swim at home on the floor all the time and she was in the same position. I need to get that little girl some lessons!
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#16 of 60 Old 06-14-2004, 11:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This momma experienced something scary.

Someone on that thread mentioned parents on "Pool Duty" so two parents are always "specifically" watching the pool. Consider volunteering when you do to your pool parties this summer. You could save a child's life.
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#17 of 60 Old 06-15-2004, 12:06 AM
 
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My sister has a pool and has a big annual pool party. Any time there is more than a couple people in the pool she designates a lifeguard. They have a sun hat and a whistle. They may not eat while on duty and you aren't supposed to distract them. Everyone takes about a half hour shift, round robin, throughout the day. You don't have to have any special skills to do this, you just have to be watching the pool and paying attention to the kids.
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#18 of 60 Old 06-15-2004, 12:27 AM
 
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Last summer my dad took the kids to the pool. One is a great swimmer, and the other does not swim at all. He was 2. My dear dad let go of the two year old to play with the older one. He ( the 2 yo) just slipped off him, and went face first into the water, as calm as can be. I was sitting on the other side and yelled at my dad to get him, but he didn't hear. My stepmom saw me freaking out and grabbed my ds. He was blue. All in the space of one minute or so. I was right thee, an my dad was almost touching him, he turned away when he let go, but didn't really move away.
It can happen so fast. I was so freaked out. Please watch out for your kiddos this summer!
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#19 of 60 Old 06-15-2004, 12:16 PM
 
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My 6 year old almost drowned yesterday, at the pool i mentioned in my above post. Thank G*d i was there. He was in the baby pool part of the pool, and this was during "adult swim". (the little ones can stay in the baby part of the pool, which is like a capital Z). One of the giant pool toys shaped like a dolphin floated into the baby area. it is super inflated and big enough for three elementary school age kids to sit on. well, my son somehow got his upper body over the lower part of the dolphin, where the tail fin is, he was kicking his legs, but like most kids he is top heavy...his head and trunk was in the water (he was bent like C over the tailfin)....and he couldn't get his head up. i watched for a minute to see if he could right himself, but he couldn't, and in the two second is took me to run and jump in, he was already bluish. The lifeguard was there, but they do not watch the baby pool, it is the responsibility of the parents (which is fine with me), i yanked him up and out, and i swear i almost dislocated his shoulder, and blew in his face. It scared the shit out of me. You know what my son said? "mama, i knew you'd save me, i knew you'd come". You know what the lifeguard said? "you want a job?"
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#20 of 60 Old 06-15-2004, 11:52 PM
 
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oH GOODNESS SWEETBABY, GLAD HE IS OK! Ack sorry sleeping baby in my lap typing 1hand.

It only takes an inch of water and 1 second for a toddler to drown. My cousin who was 2 at the time drowned in the toilet while his mom changed his baby sister. He had a twin and the twins were downstairs playing his mom ran upstairs to change the youngest's diaper and he got into the half bath downstairs and was playing in the water, the toilet seat fell down on him and he couldn't lift up his head and he drowned in the bowl . His mom felt horrible because she always had diapers downstairs and this one time she didn't.

Thanks for this thread, I think some people don't realize that even if you are in the house or right there a child can slip or anything. Dh thinks I'm neurotic because even in a 3ft pool I won't let ds in it alone because he can't swim well. He thinks being right outside the pool in a chair is ok and I don't think it is.
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#21 of 60 Old 06-16-2004, 09:20 AM
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Also don't leave any amount of water in buckets (turn them over so they don't get rainwater in them, too.)

And get a toilet lock to keep out curious toddlers. They are top-heavy, which means they can easily fall in but can't get back out.

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#22 of 60 Old 06-16-2004, 01:17 PM
 
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Thank you Jackie.

I lived in South Florida for 23 years, and it just amazes me still, how many kids drowned while there moms and dads were home.

It only takes a mouthful.

And i agree with you, i wouldnt let me kids in the pool alone either, even for a second.
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#23 of 60 Old 06-16-2004, 07:09 PM
 
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Thank you all for this discussion!!!!! My mother has a pool and she will not fence it or cover it because "it looks bad." She also has a tendency to leave doors open or unlocked. I'm sorry that she bought the house. I'm always the only one watching my 3 y.o. daughter anywhere in or out of the house, and I have the baby on my hip, too. I can never enjoy my visit. If it's not the pool, it's the toilets or my mom's insulin needles or knives left at the edge of the kitchen counter or pot handles turned out on the stove. Anyway, I emailed my mother the link to this discussion. I hope that she will take it seriously.
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#24 of 60 Old 06-19-2004, 06:19 PM
 
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I just wanted to add what you probably all know already but it hasn't been stated...never just tell a group of adults to watch your little one for you for a sec, they will all say sure and assume that the others are watching (by that I mean say 5 people all sitting around the pool)...I have heard of many drownings happening that way. It's much better to specifically ask one person to watch your little one...and after reading this thread I don't even think I'd be comfortable doing that, unless maybe it was a family member and I physically placed DD on their hip!

We have always spent lots of time around water, my grandparents have always lived on it and we spend lots of time at beaches and pools too. One thing that I personally don't feel comfortable with is using swim devices (except of course wearing a life jacket in a boat)...I think that many people slack off thinking that the water wings or whatever it might be will protect their child. I find that putting a lifejacket on at the beach just makes my DD more likely to go out too far, makes her braver than she ought to be and gives a false sense of security, both to the kid and parent as well. JMHO.
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#25 of 60 Old 06-19-2004, 06:44 PM
 
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Someone that works with dh just lost their 3 year old to drowning. I'm not sure of the details, but I think the parents were both there. Scary stuff.
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#26 of 60 Old 06-20-2004, 04:10 PM
 
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1 tablespoon of water...That's all it takes to drown. Scary HUH!
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#27 of 60 Old 06-21-2004, 09:14 AM
 
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My 2 yr old DD nearly drowned last week. We were in the deeper part of the wading pool and she was walking around up to her neck, I was hunkered down in a squat with my feet on the ground but my shoulders under the water so I was the same height as her, walking around behind her, with her body fully within the circle of my arms but I wasn't touching her because she wanted to "do it herself". As we approached the edge I looked up at some old guy's APPALLING choice in swimwear (shallow I know) and looked back at DD and the water was up over her nose. I have no idea why the pool was deeper a foot from the edge than further in, but it was - so as she approached the edge she went out of her depth. I didn't have to do anything but move my hands inches inwards to grab her and put her out of the water. I was RIGHT there, but what if I had been really distraced, maybe seen someone I knew, or talking to someone not just looking at something for a moment? Scary scary experience.
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#28 of 60 Old 06-21-2004, 04:07 PM
 
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Two days ago I went to the pool in my apartment complex around noon. There were 3 families there (other than mine) with kids in the 6-10 age range. None of the parents were even FACING the pool - they were sunbathing, eyes closed, facing the fence (where the sun was) and not looking a their kids AT ALL. One of the kids asked his mom to pass him a beach ball that was next to her, she says "I'm not here to pass you your damn stuff, get it yourself". ARGH!!! Talk about asking for trouble!! Sure the kids could all swim - but they weren't even keeping an eye on them AT ALL.

On another vein, a much more attentive mom showed up with her little girl later, and watched my daughter like a hawk while I took DS to the restroom (you can see the pool for the walk to and from the restroom, so I could see what was going on). So I suppose some people have a little sense. But before I and this other mom showed up, nobody was watching these kids, something awful could have happened and I could easily see the parents sitting there for half an hour before noticing :-(.

Mama, homeschooler, midwife. DD (13yo), DS (11yo), DD (8yo), DD (3yo), somebody new coming in November 2013.

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#29 of 60 Old 06-21-2004, 08:46 PM
 
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What an odd definition of supervision.

I do not consider a child to be being supervised if the caregiver is not actually paying attention to the child. Partially supervised maybe, as mine often are when I'm in one room and their in another and my ears are telling me what's going on.

If they're outside in the backyard and I'm not right there or at least in the same room as the door (paying attention) I don't consider them to be supervised at that time.

"What will you do once you know?"
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#30 of 60 Old 06-21-2004, 08:48 PM
 
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My mother has a pool and she will not fence it or cover it because "it looks bad."
That is most likely a violation of a few laws: municipal and state.

"What will you do once you know?"
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