As we dive into the summer season, Ashburn Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department (AVFRD) wants to remind you that it’s important to prioritize water and pool safety. Whether you’re enjoying a dip in the pool or spending time near open water, here are some key safety tips to keep in mind:
Supervision: Always supervise children closely when they’re in or near water. Avoid distractions and designate a responsible adult as the designated water watcher.
Learn to Swim: Enroll yourself and your children in swimming lessons to build water confidence and essential swimming skills. It’s never too late to learn!
Pool Barriers: Install proper barriers, such as fences with self-latching gates, to prevent unauthorized access to the pool. This is crucial to keep young children and non-swimmers safe.
Life Jackets: Ensure that children and weak swimmers wear Coast Guard-approved life jackets when in or around water. This applies to boating activities as well.
Buddy System: Always swim with a buddy, even in pools with lifeguards. Having a companion increases safety and provides assistance if needed.
Sun Protection: Protect yourself from the sun’s harmful rays by applying sunscreen, wearing hats, and using UV-protective clothing. Stay hydrated to prevent heat-related illnesses.
Alcohol and Drugs: Avoid alcohol and drugs when participating in water activities. They impair judgment, coordination, and reaction time, increasing the risk of accidents.
Water Safety Education: Educate yourself and your family about water safety, including how to recognize and respond to emergencies. Knowing CPR and basic first aid can be life-saving.
Respect the Environment: If swimming in natural bodies of water, be aware of currents, depth changes, and hidden hazards. Follow any posted signs or warnings.
Emergency Preparedness: Keep a phone nearby in case of emergencies and know how to contact local emergency services. Learn basic water rescue techniques if possible.
Thunderstorms and Lightning: Water conducts electricity, making swimming or being in the water during a thunderstorm extremely dangerous. Lightning can strike the water’s surface, potentially causing severe injuries or even death. Exit the water immediately and wait at least 30 minutes after the last thunderclap or lightning flash before entering the water again.
Avoid Diving: Only enter the water feet-first unless you are in a designated diving area with sufficient depth and safety measures in place.
Remember, water and pool safety should always be a top priority. By following these guidelines, we can all enjoy a fun-filled and safe summer by the water. Stay safe and make unforgettable memories!