Home pools and spas are, of course, drowning hazards which is why implementing layers of protection is so important.
Bearing in mind that drowning can happen in even a very little amount of water, think of all the other objects in your home that are full or potentially full of water: toilet bowls, unemptied tubs, sinks, bird baths, pet dishes… Babies and toddlers are naturally curious so having all these hazards in mind becomes increasingly important.
The following tips are meant to make your home safer:
Active Adult Supervision at All Times
Your child must never be unattended when around water. Bear in mind that babies can drown in as little as one inch of water.
When watching kids when they are in or around water, avoid any and all distractions. Keep young children within arm’s reach of an adult (touch supervision).
Empty Tubs and Buckets After Use
Immediately drain the tub once bath time is over.
Empty buckets, containers and kiddie pools as soon as they are no longer in use and store them upside down. This is so they don’t collect water.
Keep Lids and Doors Closed
Close toilet lids and consider using toilet seat locks to prevent drowning.
Keep doors to bathrooms and laundry rooms closed at all times.
Watch kids when they are in or around water, without being distracted. Keep young children within arm’s reach of an adult. Make sure older children swim with a partner every time.
When children are swimming and there are several adults present, make sure kids are actively supervised at all times by choosing a Water Watcher. A Water Watcher is a responsible adult who agrees to watch the kids in the water without distractions and wear a Water Watcher card. After a certain amount of time (such as 15-minutes), the Water Watcher card is passed to another adult, who is responsible for the active supervision. Download a Water Watcher card here.
Install fences around home pools. A pool fence should surround all sides of the pool and be at least four feet tall with self-closing and self-latching gates.
Teach children how to swim. Every child is different, so enroll children in swim lessons when they are ready. Consider their age, development and how often they are around water.
Make sure kids learn how to swim and develop these five water survival skills:
step or jump into water over their heads and return to the surface;
float or tread water for one minute;
turn around in a full circle and find an exit
swim 25 yards to exit the water; and
exit the water. If in a pool, be able to exit without using the ladder.
Know what to do in an emergency. Learning CPR and basic water rescue skills may help you save a child’s life.
Registration for the 2020 World’s Largest Swimming Lesson™ (#WLSL2020) is officially open. This year’s event will take place Thursday, June 18, 2020. Organizers are urging aquatic facilities of all types to utilize the global, one-day event to increase awareness about the importance of learning to swim in their local communities.
The worldwide event provides kids and parents exposure to life-saving water safety skills while building awareness about the vital importance of teaching children to swim and undistracted adult supervision to help prevent drowning.
The World’s Largest Swimming Lesson™ will take place on six continents over 24 hours on Thursday, June 18, 2020, as a platform for the aquatics industry to use one voice to send a clear message about the crucial importance of teaching kids to swim. Individual host locations and aquatics providers can conduct the 30-minute lesson any time of day they choose on the 18th.
Per the World Health Organization, drowning is the third leading cause of unintentional injury-related death, accounting for 7 percent of all injury-related deaths worldwide. In the U.S., drowning remains the leading cause of injury-related death for children ages 1 to 4, and the second leading cause for children under 14.
However, there is reason to hope. Since the WLSL event launched in 2010, the Swimming Lessons Save Lives™ message has been shared with more than two billion people in the U.S. alone. Facilities of all kinds are encouraged to join TEAM WLSL® in their mission to prevent childhood drowning through education. Register at https://www.wlsl.org/WLSL/host_an_event.aspx
About The World’s Largest Swimming Lesson™ WLSL was created as a platform to build awareness about the fundamental importance of teaching children to swim to prevent drowning. WLSL events have provided more than 159,000 working hours of water safety training, more than 20,000 hours each year during the one-day event. Since its inception, more than 319,000 children and adults in 48 countries have participated in WLSL lessons. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ApSY4iFZCDc
https://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/NDPA-Blog-Posts-11.png415738Adam Katchmarchihttps://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/NDPA_Logo_RGB_ForWeb.pngAdam Katchmarchi2020-03-09 21:08:222022-08-24 16:06:13Eleventh Annual World’s Largest Swimming Lesson™ Set for Thursday, June 18, 2020
The NDPA Lifesaver of the Year Award’s purpose is to acclaim and honor exceptional work in the advancement of water safety and drowning prevention, recognizing an organization’s or individual’s commitment to safer water and the reduction of drowning and aquatic injury.
The recipient of this award is chosen from a pool of candidates nominated to the NDPA and voted on through the NDPA Facebook Page. Having been confirmed by the NDPA Executive Committee and Board of Directors, this year’s recipient is Founder and Director of the Great Lakes Rescue Project, David Benjamin for the dedication he has shown in continuing to fight endlessly to prevent drownings through education and advocacy.
The NDPA would like to thank Mr. Benjamin for his support and will be greatly honored to present this award at the awards ceremony to be held on Monday, April 6th during the 2020 National Water Safety Conference in Fort Worth, TX.
United, we can prevent the tragedy of drowning!
https://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/NDPA-Blog-Posts-9.png415738Adam Katchmarchihttps://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/NDPA_Logo_RGB_ForWeb.pngAdam Katchmarchi2020-02-15 00:09:092022-09-06 15:18:35NDPA Lifesaver of the Year Award Winner
Water Safety USA is a roundtable of longstanding national nonprofit and governmental organizations with a strong record of providing drowning prevention and water safety programs, including public education.
Water Safety USA’s mission is to empower people with resources, information, and tools to safely enjoy and benefit US aquatic environments. Its overarching approach is to engage in ongoing dialog aimed at improving the delivery of water safety information, tools and resources in such a way that their effectiveness is maximized.
The National Drowning Prevention Alliance is happy to announce that as of December 2019, the NDPA is an official member of Water Safety USA. “The NDPA is thrilled to announce our membership of such an important collective effort to combat drowning and make water safer.” said NDPA executive director Dr. Adam Katchmarchi. “We are proud and honored to join the roundtable and closely with other Water Safety USA members to enhance the mission of the NDPA.”
According to Water Safety USA, they have managed to harness the individual identities of each of its members as well as their objectives and further their reach through collective and collaborative strategies that are meant to increase the impact and effectiveness of our water safety and drowning prevention efforts.
With great satisfaction the NDPA joins the roundtable of equals that is Water Safety USA confident in the fact that will help us reach our ultimate goal of substantially reducing the number of unintentional drowning incidents and deaths reported in the United States of America.
https://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/NDPA-Blog-Posts-8.png415738Adam Katchmarchihttps://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/NDPA_Logo_RGB_ForWeb.pngAdam Katchmarchi2020-01-11 13:41:132022-09-06 15:50:57The NDPA Joins Water Safety USA
Every day, an average of ten people die from unintentional drowning. Drowning continues to rank fifth among the leading causes of unintentional injury death in the United States and second for causes of death in children aged 14 and under.
The NDPA continues to work hard to bring those numbers down through water safety awareness, education and advocacy. As 2019 draws to a close, we look back and take stock of the progress made to further our goals of drowning prevention:
Developed a new organizational strategic plan.
Renewed our focus on advocacy and grassroot drowning prevention efforts.
The holidays are a time of lots of fun and activity in the average household. It is a time when most people are out of their normal, daily routine hosting family gatherings and celebrating with friends and neighbors. With all the hustle and bustle, accidents are more prone to happen which is why homeowners must make additional efforts to keep family members, guests and pets as safe as possible.
Bear in mind that ages and stages make a huge difference in home and water safety so be sure to take them into consideration when prepping your home for the December festivities because the littlest of details can make a huge difference.
The NDPA recently hosted an online webinar where our guest speakers shared a bevy of safety tips that can be easily applied during the holiday season. Here are a few basic precautions to ensure you and yours remain injury-free throughout the season.
Make a quick list of local emergency numbers to keep on hand and make copies for friends and family visiting.
When cooking, set timers and always be attentive of what is on the stove to avoid fires.
Child safety should be delegated to someone who can actively supervise them without distractions. Hosts need to learn to “pass the baton” and make sure there is always someone watching the kids.
Walk your guests through your home and property and point out the layers of protection that are in place explaining what to be on the lookout for to make sure everyone is safe.
If you have open water areas on your property, set the rules as to where kids can go without an adult and be sure everyone is ware of them.
Designated watchers can play games to keep kids busy and occupied. Find fun ways to distract them so they don’t go our and seek entertainment on their own.
Use LED lights when decorating your home. They don’t get as hot as regular ones which means your tree won’t dry out so quickly and become a bigger fire hazard.
Make sure your tree is watered everyday to prevent early dryness.
Watch candle placements in your home and be sure they are far from curtains and not within reach of kids and pets. Be aware that they don’t burn down too low and crack the glass that encases them or that they burn the surface on which that are placed.
Put together a family newsletter in advance and send out before house-guests arrive. Go over it together and make sure the inherent safety message is well received.
A newsletter is also a great way to give family members information that can be shared with others such as emergency numbers, the exact address where they are staying and any emergency plan that you may have in place.
Make an action plan to get through an emergency that details who you are going to call and where you are going to go.
If the worst situation happens, be ready by knowing exactly where you are and where the nearest hospital is. Try to stay calm during the emergency, call 911 and listen attentively to any instructions the operator might give you.
Learn CPR and make sure other family members and guests have this life-saving skill as well.
What safety measures do you have in place at home to prevent accidents during the holidays?
https://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/12.png415738Adam Katchmarchihttps://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/NDPA_Logo_RGB_ForWeb.pngAdam Katchmarchi2019-12-18 22:37:112022-08-25 14:45:39Home Safety For The Holidays
December is the biggest gift-giving month of the year. Parents, aunts, uncles and grandparents are buying massive amounts of toys and gifts to ensure kids have a wonderful holiday season.
Unfortunately, December is also the month in which thousands of children are injured every year as a result of playing with unsafe or non age appropriate toys. In the United States, emergency rooms treated 251,800 toy-related injuries, according to the report issued last year from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). 44 percent of the injuries were to the head and face area, the area of the body with the most injuries. An estimated 84,400 of all toy-related injuries, or 34 percent, happened to children younger than 5 years of age.
Prevent Blindness America declared December Safe Toys & Gifts Month in order to reduce the number of accidents and injuries suffered by children due to unsafe or inappropriate toys during the holidays. Take the time this month to re-cap on some basic safety advice and brush up on buying safe tips, appropriate toys and what to do should you discover a potential hazard.
It’s important to think about the safety of any gift you’re giving, especially if it’s a gift for a child. We’ve put together a list of toys and gifts that are not only safe in themselves but also promote water safety awareness which is the first step towards drowning prevention.
“Josh the Baby Otter” was created to help children comprehend and remember this important message: TO STAY AWAY FROM WATER UNLESS ACCOMPANIED BY AN ADULT. It’s goal is to create a water safety behavior for all children that will be passed on from generation to generation.
Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim is an important and fun child’s first guide to water safety. Written for children ages two through six, the book conveys the message of how to be safe near the water through the story of Stewie, a duck who wants to swim with the “big ducks” but is prevented from going in the water by his older sisters until he learns the water safety rules.
The Polar Bear Who Couldn’t, Wouldn’t Swim follows the journey of a young polar bear named Zeke who is afraid of the water and refuses to swim. He leaves his home in search of other animals who do not swim, and ends up finding that he can enjoy the water if he follows the ABC and Ds of water safety, while learning a valuable lesson about facing his fears with a positive attitude.
USCG approved lifevests
Getting kids to wear life jackets can be a cumbersome task — bulky neon padded vests don’t exactly shout cool. But the risks of not wearing them are too great to ignore. The Center for Disease Control reports drowning to be the second leading cause of unintentional injury-related death amongst children ages 1-14 behind motor vehicle crashes. This can be a great gift that helps protect kids when in or near water.
Nekdoodle® offers a wide variety of pool toys and accessories for kids and adults such as pool floats for swimming, swim collars, pool noodles, water noodles, personal flotation devices, neck floats and foam noodles swimming.
Swim Water Shoes
Water shoes have a great many uses, and can do much more than flip-flops or sandals can. They will keep children’s feet protected from slips, sharp rocks, sunburns and much more making them a good choice as a holiday gift.
This gift can help save a life! Upon purchase of this gift, a donation will be made to the Stew Leonard III Children’s Charities, which grants underprivileged children with FREE swim lessons.It includes a Stewie the Duck book,bright, sunshine yellow hooded towel featuring Stewie the Duck, a Stewie the Duck plush, and bath time toy. All bundled in a playful bucket and shovel set, with helpful water safety advice.
The NDPA thanks all of you for taking the time to comment and for your dedication and support of drowning prevention and we encourage respectful commentary. Given the nature of the commentary on this piece and on previous posts, the NDPA felt it important to provide clarity, define our position as the NDPA, and respond to key issues raised.
It is paramount to state first that the NDPA wholeheartedly believes that swimming lessons are an important layer of protection. At many points in the Facebook commentary, the NDPA was accused of attacking swim lessons as an ineffective way of preventing drowning. That is not accurate and it doesn’t not represent our beliefs as an organization.
do however, believe that we cannot rely solely on one singular layer of
protection to prevent drowning. We often cite swim lessons in this context as
there have been many incidents in which skilled swimmers have drown. However, we
also hold this same belief when it comes to other layers of protection. Pool
fences are an important layer, and they can fail. As can self-closing,
self-latching gates. One can forget to put a pool cover back on the pool and an
alarm’s batteries can expire. Just like skilled swimmers can drown, layers of
protection must operate in combination to truly work. This is why the NDPA encourages people to practice all layers of
protection, including learning to swim from high quality lessons.
We are confident that many of you would agree, there is no quick and easy solution that will prevent all drowning. This reality is one of the reasons drowning has been so difficult to stop. The polarization and infighting amongst drowning prevention advocates has also played a major role. As an alliance, we represent all areas of water safety and drowning prevention. We support all layers of protection and, as the Alliance, we will not frame our messaging to focus only on one layer.
We appreciate the passion behind the support of learning to swim but if we only focus on the positive effects, we would be doing a disservice to our audience and the public at large. The author of the article in question was making a point that research shows that parents can become overly reliant on swim lessons as a method to protect their children from drowning. The author is not arguing that swimming lessons aren’t a vital part of protecting a child from drowning. Her point was to shed light on the fact that parent’s over estimate their child’s ability and the need for direct supervision after swimming lessons.
An important item we must address is the accusation that the NDPA is not citing research-based studies to support our stance. As the leading organization in drowning prevention and water safety, we firmly believe that research and evidence-based approaches are of paramount importance. While the NDPA did not write the article posted on our Facebook page, we will stand by the fact that the author does cite relevant research in drowning prevention literature. Please see the list of relevant published research studies below that are often used by the NDPA and some of which were discussed in the article in question.
The research published by Dr. Barbara Morrongiello in 2014 that this article cites is an example. The research showed that “as parents perceive their child to be accumulating swim skills, they increasingly believe that children are capable of keeping themselves from drowning, and as a result, that less active parent supervision of the child is necessary.” Obviously, the parent education component of a learn to swim lesson is vital for parents to fully understand the outcomes of swimming lessons. Parents need to appreciate their child’s abilities in the water after swim lessons and that no one of any age or ability level should swim by themselves. We as the NDPA are not insinuating that a swim instructor would claim that their swim lessons will “drown-proof a child”. However, the article points out that parents can make that assumption on their own, given the results of Dr. Morrongiello’s research.
Another example is related to the statistic that learning to swim will reduce the risk of drowning by 88%. This study was not conducted by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), but by Dr. Ruth Brenner and her colleagues at the National Institute of Child Health and Development and published in 2009. We all applaud the AAP’s move to change the age recommendations and push for starting the learn to swim process at younger ages. However, this article points out important components of the research conducted in by Dr. Brenner and her associates that are often overlooked. We often hear the statistic from this study that participation in formal swimming lessons can reduce the risk of drowning by 88%. It is often missed that this research had a small sample size and the 95% confidence intervals regarding the protective effects were 3%-99%. There is no argument that this study is an important step forward and has been cited by the AAP as a key reason why they made their recent modifications. However, it is important to note that the team behind this study points to the limitations of their own research and that “swimming skills alone are insufficient to protect a child from drowning.”
There are several research studies below that we as the NDPA have also used in the past to support our stance on several issues. The insinuation that the NDPA does not support, does not believe in, or does not follow relevant evidence and research-based studies and advancements in drowning prevention and water safety is simply inaccurate, unfounded, and completely false. With all due respect, the comments that state the research cited is outdated and inconsistent, furthers the problem we are facing. An example is that AAP just modified their statement and stance regarding swimming lessons this year. That doesn’t make all previous research invalid or inaccurate. We may need to look at opinions, commentary, and research conducted or produced prior to that with the recent changes made in the front of our minds, however, that doesn’t mean we should toss aside any, and everything published prior to 2019.
we never intend to muddy the waters or create inconsistent messages in the
drowning prevention space. Our true intent is to advance the discussion by
sharing viewpoints, information, and educational content that pushes the
drowning prevention and water safety community to have productive discussions
addressing the problems we face. This isn’t easy and sometimes can lead to
controversy. We are all working to reduce drowning, and as stated before and
there is no cure-all to this awful tragedy. We may not always agree on a
singular viewpoint. We may disagree with certain people’s opinions. We may find
the results of a research study to be unhelpful or in direct contradiction of
current messaging. Someone having a differing viewpoint or approach to solving
a complex problem (like drowning), doesn’t make them wrong. Having an open discussion
and addressing issues where there is disagreement is important and the only
action that will advance our shared goals. The NDPA will continue to promote an
open and honest discussion about drowning prevention and water safety that is
factual, evidence based, and honest as this is our responsibility and role in
Our goal by writing this blog article today is to inform our audience of our decision-making process and the NDPA’s stance on layers of protection as well as our role in the drowning prevention space. It is not to further any arguments or criticism that the NDPA received in relation to this opinion article and in many other instances when sharing various information on our Facebook page. We fully understand and appreciate how highly emotional this topic can be. Our goal is to reduce the number of awful tragedies that causes this to be such an emotional topic. While many disagree with the author or the opinion piece’s tone; we did not share this to support her tone. We shared this work to again shed light on the fact that we can’t be overly reliant on one layer of protection.
The nature of the NDPA as an “alliance” organization means that we, as an alliance, are all in this together. That does not mean its easy and we all agree on everything. But we all can agree drowning is preventable and that the use of multiple layers of protection save lives. With a complex issue such as drowning; the discussion, refinement, and education of the preventative measures will sometimes lead to situations where we find ourselves disagreeing with approaches, messaging, and each other. In these cases, we all need to remind ourselves and others that we share the same goal, to prevent drowning and to save lives.
https://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/10.png415738Adam Katchmarchihttps://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/NDPA_Logo_RGB_ForWeb.pngAdam Katchmarchi2019-11-23 00:06:512022-09-06 15:41:42Swimming Lessons: One Layer of Protection
The National Drowning Prevention Alliance is Joining the Global GivingTuesday Movement to gather funds for our Material Requests Program.
Tustin, CA. – 11/10/2019 – This GivingTuesday, the National Drowning Prevention Alliance will celebrate giving by launching a fundraiser for the occasion that will allow us to continue supporting communities in need with their water safety educational efforts. The funds gathered will be destined to fulfill the hundreds of requests the NDPA receives every month through our Material Requests Program.
Education is an effective way to reduce drowning incidents.
GivingTuesday, taking place December 3rd, is a global day of
giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and
organizations to encourage giving and to celebrate generosity worldwide. Every
year, on GivingTuesday, millions of people across the globe mobilize to
show up, give back, and change their communities. The goal is to create a
massive wave of generosity that lasts well beyond that day, and touches every
person on the planet.
Founded in 2012, GivingTuesday has inspired millions of people to give
back and support the causes they believe in. In just seven years, GivingTuesday
has radically changed how we think about generosity and showed just how much
power communities everywhere have to create change.
“When GivingTuesday launched in the US in 2012, we
believed that technology and social media could be used to make generosity go
viral,” said Asha Curran, GivingTuesday’s CEO and co-founder. “We believed in
the idea that people fundamentally want to give and to talk about giving; and
that the social sector had the capacity to show more innovative leadership,
creativity, and collaboration. People and organizations around the world proved
us right. As we prepare for December 3, we’re energized and encouraged by the
community’s generosity. The levels of creativity, effort and the quality of the
new ideas people have contributed and shared are phenomenal.”
Those who are interested in joining National Drowning Prevention Alliance’s GivingTuesday initiative can visit https://ndpa.org/givingtuesday-2019/ . For more details about the GivingTuesday movement, visit the GivingTuesday website (www.givingtuesday.org), Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/GivingTuesday) or follow @GivingTuesday and the #GivingTuesday hashtag on Twitter.
About the National Drowning Prevention Alliance
As an educational resource for the United States and beyond, the National Drowning Prevention Alliance strives to place emphasis on research, awareness, and policy changes to impact the incidence of toddler drownings in swimming pools, bathtubs, spas and jacuzzis. The result has been an unprecedented growth and presence in national and local drowning prevention efforts.
The NDPA is relentless in the pursuit of its number one goal to put an end to child drownings being the leading cause of unintentional death for children between the ages of 1 and 4.
GivingTuesday is a global giving movement that has been built by
individuals, families, organizations, businesses and communities in the U.S.
and in countries around the world. GivingTuesday harnesses the collective power
of a unique blend of partners to transform how people think about, talk about, and participate in the
giving season. It inspires people to take collective action to improve their
communities, give back in better, smarter ways to the charities and causes they
believe in, and help create a better world.
To learn more about GivingTuesday participants and activities or
to join the celebration of giving, please visit:
https://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/9.png415738Adam Katchmarchihttps://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/NDPA_Logo_RGB_ForWeb.pngAdam Katchmarchi2019-11-11 18:18:472022-09-06 15:50:14The NDPA Joins the Global GivingTuesday Movement
Swim skills add a layer of protection to prevent drowning incidents.
Formal swimming lessons reduce the risk of drowning among children 1-4 years. This is the only sport that can actually save lives and can also reduce the risk of drowning among older individuals.
Everyone Should Learn To Swim
Swimming is not an instinctive skill for humans. We can not survive in water unless we are taught how to swim. All adults and children should learn to swim.
Role of Swim Lessons
Adults should be smart and aware and never consider children have been “drown proofed” because they’ve had swim lessons. Nothing will ever eliminate the risk of drowning because it simply doesn’t discriminate. Even an Olympic swimmer can drown.
When to Start
Always speak with your pediatrician before considering any water safety/swimming lessons for children. With the right instruction, children can gain skills and a love for the water even at a young age.
Once parents have decided their child is developmentally ready for swim lessons, they should proceed to look for a program that has experienced, well-trained instructors and fits their budget.
Include Water Safety Education
Ensure that swim instruction includes water safety and survival education at the appropriate developmental level.
Ideally, programs should teach ‘water competency’ too – the ability to get out of the water if your child ends up in the water unexpectedly.
Selecting a Program
Check if the instructor is trained in swim instruction, child development, and currently certified in CPR (some are not). Observe classes before enrollment and monitor lessons for safety skills, the effectiveness of the instructor, the child’s reception to learning, and progress. Lessons should be continuous, year-round, not taken for just one season as skills need to be developed and maintained for life.
Even the best swim lessons cannot “drown-proof” a child, and we strongly recommend parents take the necessary steps to make their child’s environment safer. For homes with a pool, the most important safety measure is a 4-sided fence that completely surrounds the pool and isolates it from the house.
More swimmers will result in a healthier society, fewer drownings, and reduced healthcare costs for the country.
https://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/NDPA-Blog-Posts-6.png415738Adam Katchmarchihttps://ndpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/NDPA_Logo_RGB_ForWeb.pngAdam Katchmarchi2019-11-07 02:40:572022-09-06 15:40:46Swimming Lessons as a Layer of Protection to Prevent Drownings
The mission of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance is: “United, we can prevent the tragedy of drowning.” We believe that together we can reduce the incidence of drowning and aquatic injuries in the US and abroad. Join us to help save lives!
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