Layers of Protection for Pool Safety to Prevent Drowning!

Drowning Statistics and Facts

  • Ten people on average die from drowning every day in the US.
  • It only takes 20 seconds for a child to drown in 2 inches of water.
  • For children ages 1-14, drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury death after motor vehicle crashes.
  • More children ages 1-4 die from drowning than any other cause of death except birth defects.
  • An adult can drown in less than 60 seconds.
  • Non-fatal drownings occur more frequently and many of those survivors have severe impairments that are lifelong.
  • Nearly 80% of all drowning victims are male.
  • Drowning rates are higher among certain racial/ethnic groups, particularly Native American, Alaskan Native and African Americans.


Learn How to Swim

Kids and adults should learn how to swim! Our friends at the American Red Cross (ARC) have developed swimming lessons for kids and adults and these lessons allow everyone the opportunity to learn to swim in a safe environment and at their own pace. The ARC Learn-to-Swim classes are taught by certified, knowledgeable, and caring instructors. For more information, please go to:


Always-Adult Supervision

  • Never take your eyes off children in the waterDrowning is quick and silent!
  • Do not allow a young child in the pool without an adult.
  • Knowing how to swim does not make a child drown-proof. Never use flotation devices as a substitute for supervision.
  • If a child is missing, check the pool first. Seconds count in preventing death or disability.


Pool Rules

  • No child should ever go into any pool without adult supervision.
  • Always keep your eyes on your children. A child can drown in as little at 20 seconds.
  • Public pools, such as gyms, hotels, and schools, are required to post their pool rules.
  • If you have your own pool at home, create your own safety rules.


Know Skills That Can Save a Life

  • CPR! Knowing CPR can help you save a life and our friends at the American Red Cross offer CPR training.
  • Teach yourself and your children how to swim.
  • Keep rescue equipment such as a life preserver nearby.
  • Keep a phone near the pool for an emergency and keep yourself off the phone.
  • In an emergency call 911!


Use Barriers at Your Home Pools

  • A barrier such as 4 feet high fence, should surround the pool or spa. The gate or door must be self-closing and self-latching with the latch out of a child’s reach. If the house serves as one side of the barrier, there should be an alarm on doors that have direct access to the pool.
  • If there is a ladder with the above-the-ground pools, and inflatable pools, remove the ladder when it is not in use.
  • A safety cover for pools and spas can provide a good barrier from the water.


Avoid Pool Entrapments

  • Do not let your children play or swim near pool drains or the pool suction outlets.
  • If your child’s hair is long, use hair braids, bands, or a swimming cap to keep their hair away from the suction drains.
  • Check the drain covers. Never go into a pool or spa that has a loose, broken, or missing drain cover.
  • Know where the electrical cut-off switch for the pool or spa pump are so that you van turn it off quickly if needed.
  • If someone is entrapped against a drain, immediately, cut off the power to the pump.
  • Instead of trying to pull the person away from the powerful suction, pry a hand between the drain and the person’s body to break the seal.
  • In an emergency call 911!