HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — In just the last week in North Alabama, three people have drowned. As summer gets underway, water safety is something experts say everyone should know.
Water safety is important year-round, however, they say 65% of pool drownings happen during the summer months of June, July, and August.
Local aquatic experts want people to realize the importance of staying cautious around waters, and the steps they should follow in order to keep themselves and their children safe.
Kristin Stitt at SafeSplash Swim School is encouraging Alabamians to get swimming lessons that could prevent drownings.
“Research has shown that swimming lessons or learning to swim will reduce drowning incidents by 88% everyone should have at least in my opinion that basic knowledge and skill set,” Stitt said.
According to the CDC, Alabama ranks sixth in the country in child drowning incidents, and while you may not think it can’t happen to you or your children, drowning can occur at any given moment.
“Eliminating distractions, the phone right, that could be anything that’s getting your eyes off the pool or your kids. They’re the guardian right, so just making sure your eyes are always on your kid,” Eichberg told News 19.
An Alabama Department of Public Health statistic shows drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional death for children ages 1-14.
Experts at SafeSplash say parents should also take certain steps to ensure in the event of a drowning, they know how to potentially save a life.
“CPR can save a life. Parents knowing CPR, that can just add to your kind of comfort knowing that I know CPR if need be,” Eichberg said.
After one life-changing incident involving his daughter, Eric Bonds knows the importance of getting swim lessons for children.
“We had an event where we actually had her fall in the pool luckily we were there but she had no idea how to swim as a parent if you have the ability to teach your kid as early as possible again its that life safety you never know when you need that skill,” Bonds told News 19.
Although water safety is a multi-layered approach, experts say some of the most important steps to stay safe around the waters are never taking an eye off your kids. You can even install safety barriers around pools and hot tubs to prevent accidental events from occurring.