Lifejackets important for Canadians throughout the winter season

Topics: National, Water Safety
December 10, 2012

Lifejackets important for Canadians throughout the winter season

As the winter season gets underway, many Canadians may want to remember the importance of water safety and watch out for potential situations.

From ice fishing to other aquatic activities like swimming, the chillier months of the year can still be an active period for those who love the water, which also means it's an important time to practice good habits.

The role of the Canadian Red Cross
From emergency response to humanitarian relief for those in need, the Canadian Red Cross is the country's largest and most extensive charitable organization. When disasters strike, the Canadian Red Cross strives to provide affected individuals with the resources they need to recover.

For more than 65 years, the Canadian Red Cross has helped people across the country develop water skills through their learn-to-swim curriculum. Each year, more than a million Canadians sign up for swim courses offered by the Canadian Red Cross and 20,000 dedicated individuals go on to become trained and certified as water safety instructors.

The importance of safety
Each year on the Thursday before Victoria Day, the Canadian Red Cross celebrates National Lifejacket Day. While this important event highlights the significance of wearing a lifejacket or personal flotation device (PFDs), it's equally crucial that people understand the benefits that lifejackets can yield year-round for children and adults alike.

Whether it's winter or summer, a lifejacket or PFD can be the difference between life and death. More than 160 Canadians drown every year while boating and in 88 per cent of these avoidable incidents, a person either wasn't wearing a lifejacket or didn't have it properly secured.

Educate yourself today
Swimming and boating can be wonderful activities to engage in throughout the year, yet, if you're unprepared for potential hazards, you may be putting yourself and loved ones at risk.

With swimming lessons offered by the Canadian Red Cross, your family can gain valuable skills and knowledge of the most effective safety habits both in and out of the water. Best of all, the courses offered by the Canadian Red Cross can be tailored to meet your comfort level in the water, so whether you're a first-time swimmer or your technique has gotten a little rusty, you're sure to find the class that best fits your needs.

To learn more about programs in your neighbourhood, please visit us online or contact your local Canadian Red Cross office today.

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