American Academy of Pediatrics: Swimming Pool Drowning Prevention for Toddlers, Children, and Teens

As we move forward into the year and get closer to the summertime months, children from toddlers to teens are going to be poolside or actually in the water. The American Academy of Pediatrics understands both the benefits that swimming provides children as well as the risks of drowning and injury to toddlers, adolescents, and teens. Every year, the American Academy of Pediatrics initiates a concerted effort to ensure that parents and young people alike have access to meaningful information about how to enhance overall swimming pool safety and lower the risk of drowning among young people.

The Drowning Continuum: A Close Look at the Consequences of Drowning

As a prelude to discussing swimming pool drowning prevention for toddlers, children, and teens, we divert for a moment to take a close look at the consequences of drowning. The American Academy of Pediatrics advises families (and the public more generally) that drowning outcomes or consequences need to be considered on a spectrum. In this regard, there are three primary classifications of drowning outcomes:

  • No morbidity (or no consequential injury)
  • Morbidity (some type of injury short of immediate death)
  • Death

In turn, drownings that result in some level of morbidity or consequential injury are broken down further, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the World Health Organization, and the World Congress of Drowning:

  • Moderately disabled
  • Severely disabled
  • Vegetative state or coma
  • Brain death

American Academy of Pediatrics Drowning Prevention Campaign

Every year, the American Academy of Pediatrics undertakes its Drowning Prevention Campaign. The Drowning Prevention Campaign is a comprehensive, coordinated effort by the American Academy of Pediatrics to aid in the protection of children and reduce the risk and rate of drowning among toddlers, elementary-aged children, and teens.

At the heart of the American Academy of Pediatrics Drowning Prevention Campaign is the recognition that we cannot drown-proof children. As a result, parents, professionals, and others need to take necessary steps to plan “layers of protection” to lower the risk of children drowning. As part of this endeavor, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends some basic tactics to be employed for toddlers, elementary-aged children, and teens.

Enhancing the Safety of Toddlers Near Pools

The American Academy of Pediatrics has some specific recommendations for enhancing toddler safety near pools that include:

  • Stay within arm’s reach of a toddler whenever near a swimming pool
  • Always have a specific adult assigned to monitor the activities or a toddler near a pool
  • Avoid using floaties; rather, use Coast Guard-approved lifejackets for toddlers near or in water

Protecting Elementary School Aged Children at Pools

In addition, the American Academy of Pediatrics has delineated recommendations for lowering the drowning risk among elementary-aged children:

  • Make sure your child takes swimming lessons (once age five and above)
  • Ensure that your child is always supervised when in a pool
  • Encourage your child to swim with a pool partner
  • Instruct your child to enter a swimming pool feet first

Keeping Teens Safe at Pools

Finally, the American Academy of Pediatrics has suggestions for keeping teenagers safe in and around swimming pools:

  • Make sure your teen takes swimming lessons
  • Make sure your teen is supervised when swimming
  • Encourage your teen to swim with a partner
  • Encourage your teen to enter a swimming pool feet first

Additional Safety Protocols

These more pinpointed swimming pool drowning prevention directives are in addition to broader safety protocols espoused by the American Academy of Pediatrics that include:

  • Make sure the pool area has an effective barrier to keep younger people out when no adults are present
  • Doors (and windows) that lead to a pool area need to be locked
  • Fences, gates, the pool deck, and the pool itself should be appropriately alarmed
  • Lifesaving equipment and rescue gear need to be readily accessible
  • Utilize a pool cover for added safety

Protect Your Legal Rights After a Swimming Pool Drowning Accident

In addition to protecting against a swimming pool drowning accident in the first instance, you need to know how to protect your legal rights in such an incident occurs. The first step in protecting your vital legal rights is to contact an experienced, dedicated swimming pool drowning accident lawyer by calling The Doan Law Firm at (800) 349-0000. There is no cost for an initial consultation with a Doan Law Firm attorney.

The Doan Law Firm makes an attorney fee guarantee to you. Our firm will never charge an attorney fee unless we win your case for you.