Summertime: it’s our favorite season of all! For us, it means getting our tan on, chilling at backyard barbecues, enjoying some frozen treats in the sunshine, and, of course, taking a dip in the pool. Yep, these few blissful months make all of that frigid snow-shoveling seem worth it!
But, with this warm season also comes quite the danger for our youngest swimmers. According to information compiled by the CDC, unintentional, non-boating related fatal drownings, total in at an average of 3,536 annually, or roughly 10 per day. To make it worse, about 1 in 5 in this group are children under the age of 14.
It’s a startling statistic, but it’s also one that needs to be given as much visibility as possible. Just recently, legendary Olympian, Bode Miller, lost his 19-month-old daughter in a drowning accident at a backyard pool party. This just goes to show you that accidental drownings can happen to anyone—and in the blink of an eye.
That’s why we’re sharing quite a shocking viral video with you today, filmed by a concerned father who wants to show the world that, even taking precautions to shore-up your pool’s safety, sometimes doesn’t do the job.
In the short clip, a dad by the name of Keith Wyman, presses the ‘record’ button, after telling his 2-year-old toddler to climb up his elevated pool’s safety ladder. The ladder is in the locked position, which means that its stairs are flattened so that its entry point is sheer and seemingly impossible to climb.
But, just because the dad has done his diligence to lock the safety ladder, doesn’t mean that his son is kept safe from the water; as a matter of fact, the little guy is able to scale the surface in seconds flat. Scary!
Fast facts about drowning-related deaths
From today’s video, it’s clear that accidental drownings aren’t always rooted in complete negligence; they can happen at a crowded pool party or even in a backyard that contains “safety” devices. Let’s take a look at how and why so many drowning-related deaths occur in the U.S. annually:
• Kids, ages 1 to 4 suffer the highest drowning rates
• Drowning is the second-leading cause of death in children ages 1-14, behind automobile accidents
• The CDC names lack of barriers (i.e. fences, gates, nets, etc.) and lack of supervision as the second and third leading causes of unintentional drowning deaths in this age group
So, what can parents do to shield their kids from this danger? According to the organization, installing a four-sided barrier around a swimming pool reduces a child’s risk of drowning by 83%. It just goes to show you that “safety gates” like the one featured in today’s video, just don’t cut it!
To watch the shocking viral clip for yourself, be sure to click on the video below. Let’s keep our little ones safe this summer!
Does your backyard pool have a four-sided fence? If not, what water safety precautions do you take to protect your family? Do you think your toddler could scale a safety gate like the one in the video?