Making sure the kids stay safe during swimming season

HUNTSVILLE, Ala - Video of a toddler climbing up an "unclimbable" pool ladder has gone viral. And now its causing concern among many parents across the country.

It begs the question, how do you actually make sure kids are safe around the water?

Having fun at the pool is a sure way for summer to make a splash, but pool safety expert Kimberly Putman wants parents to be armed with the facts before their kids dive in.

"Anything can happen when you're around the water," she said.

A viral video seems to illustrate that point. A young child climbs the outside of a locked pool ladder, almost getting to the top before his mom took him down.

"Honestly, I wasn't surprised because I have met a lot of toddlers that are capable of opening doors, getting into things, that you think is impossible but if they set their mind to it they can do it," said Kimberly Putman.

With that in mind, Putman has some tips for parents.

Summer just started and many kids will be going to the pool for the first time in months. Putman says parents shouldn't have expectations how well their child can swim this year based on how well they could swim at the end of the season last year.

"Ten months of winter is a very long time to be out of the water," Putman said.

She says parents should teach their kids to swim at an early age. If people have a pool at their home she recommends adding certain safety features.

"Get a device you put in your pool like if a wave is a certain size that it alarms inside."

But even with all that, she says nothing protects kids as effectively as the watchful eye of a parent or guardian.

People who have pools in their backyard should be vigilant at all times.

According to the Alabama Department of Public Health, most children who drowned in pools were last seen in the home, had been out of sight for less than five minutes and were in the care of one or both of their parents.

The Department also released to WHNT News 19 the most recent figures for drownings in the state.


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