Water Safety Tips for Safe Summer Swimming from the Canadian Red Cross

Topics: Saskatchewan, Water Safety
Michelle Palansky | June 08, 2021

The sun is shining, the heat is rising, and it’s time to enjoy all the fun that summer has to offer. But before taking the plunge at the lake or in your backyard pool, the Canadian Red Cross wants you to keep water safety at top of mind this National Water Safety Week.
“Young children, between the ages of one and four, are particularly at risk of drowning,” explains Lesley-Anne Morley, Canadian Red Cross swimming and water safety representative. “A high percentage of these water-related fatalities are preventable. The more aware we are of possible dangers around bodies of water, the better we can prepare, prevent, and enjoy.”
Keep these water safety tips in mind this summer.
  1. Active supervision
    • The absence of adult supervision is a factor in most child drownings.
    • Whether it’s a pool, the bathtub, a water park, or the beach, always watch children actively around water—even if they can swim.
    • Consider requiring all non-swimmers to wear a lifejacket to keep them at the surface to assist you while supervising.
  2. Backyard pools
    • Backyard pools are especially dangerous for small children. Ensure adequate barriers are in place such as four-sided fencing (recommended at least 1.2 m in height, with gaps no larger than 10 cm), along with a self-closing, self-latching gate.
    • Empty portable toddler pools after each use.
  3. Bathing children
    • When bathing infants or toddlers, an adult should always remain with the child. Children should never be relied upon to supervise other children in the bath.
    • When a child is in the bathtub, never leave to answer the phone or for any other momentary distraction.
  4. Diving
    • Diving headfirst into water should be avoided unless the individual is properly trained and is sure that the water is deep enough.
    • Avoid diving in home pools and always enter the water feet-first.
  5. Open water
    • Be cautious about swimming in currents.
    • If you become caught in a river current roll onto your back and go downstream feetfirst to avoid hitting obstacles headfirst. When you are out of the strongest part of the current, swim on a forward angle toward shore.
“Swimming and paddling to cool off from the heat are some of the great pleasures of summertime,” says Morley. “Understanding safety issues around water, preparing for possible emergencies, and remaining diligent when supervising children help can keep everyone swimming safely.”
Section Widgets

First Aid and CPR courses in your area

Interested in taking a Red Cross First Aid or CPR course? Find a course in your community or online.

Find a course