Canadian Red Cross Fox 40 Classic Whistle

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Canadian Red Cross, Fox 40
Swimming and Water Safety Innovation

The whistle: an iconic symbol of water safety. Its high-pitched shriek tells swimmers when trouble’s brewing. Candidates for the Canadian Red Cross lifeguard training programs must carry one while undergoing their certification.

The Red Cross has a long association with teaching water safety in Canada, and in 2009 the Red Cross Lifeguard was launched. National Program Standards were devised to offer the most up-to-date instruction to comply with international lifeguarding standards. The two-step certification process gives trainees hands-on practice. Depending on previous experience, courses can last from a few hours for recertification to 40 hours for full training.

There are three main streams to Red Cross lifeguard training: assistant lifeguard (to teach basic rescue and injury prevention); pool lifeguard (to handle emergencies, create a safe environment, and interact with the public); and waterfront lifeguard (same as pool training, but adjusted to deal with outdoor shoreline conditions).

The program, which is available in most provinces, continues to evolve. Guidelines are currently being updated based on research by the Canadian Guidelines Consensus Task Force (which consists of the Red Cross, Canadian Ski Patrol, Heart and Stroke Foundation, Lifesaving Society, and St. John’s Ambulance) regarding oxygen administration and positioning those who are unresponsive during a water emergency.

Canadian Red Cross Fox 40 Classic Whistle

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