MANCHESTER BY-THE-SEA — With summer in full swing, Chief George D. Kramlinger and the Manchester by-the-Sea Fire Department would like to remind residents of several important safety tips as they spend time by the water.
The American Red Cross reports that more than 200 children drown in swimming pools each year. Additionally, drowning is the number one cause of accidental death for children between the ages of 1 and 4 according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“Children can silently slip below the surface and drown in as little as 2 inches of water. This can occur anywhere — like home or hotel pools, bathtubs, ponds and creeks on camping trips, or a day at the beach,” Chief Kramlinger said. “Always be cognizant of your surroundings no matter where you’re enjoying your time by the water. Our goal is for everyone to have a safe and happy summer.”
To prevent injury and death, the Manchester-by-the-Sea Fire Department reminds residents to follow these pool, beach and boating safety regulations and precautions:
- Per Massachusetts regulation, pools should be surrounded by a 4-foot-high barrier that encloses the pool and has an access gate that self-closes, locks and opens outward from the swimming area (even if you don’t have children).
- Don’t leave toys floating in the pool as they attract unsupervised children.
- Fasten a safety cover over the pool when it is not in use, and remove ladders to further prevent access into the pool. Pool alarms are required whenever a house door leads directly to a pool deck.
- Set safety instructions and share them with family, friends, neighbors and anyone else who is near or uses the pool. Advise children to stay away from pool deep ends, and to always walk, never run near the pool.
- At the beach, only swim in areas where lifeguards are on duty. Supervise your children at all times, even when the lifeguard is on duty. Never assume someone else is watching your child, even for a second
- When swimming in the ocean, be aware that riptides are dangerous and can come on suddenly. Be aware of your surroundings and swim to the right or left to escape a riptide.
- If someone is stuck in a riptide, call 911.Throw the victim something that floats – a life jacket, cooler, inflatable ball and yell instructions on how to escape the current.
- When boating, always utilize personnel flotation devices, especially for children.
- Take a CPR course for adults and children to be prepared if an emergency situation occurs. Enroll children in an age-appropriate swimming lesson program.
- Watch the local weather reports and do not swim in the ocean or pools if thunderstorms are in the forecast.