Keep kids safe at pool parties with designated water-watcherPosted: Updated:
Many of you will be throwing pool parties this Fourth of July.
But just because there might be plenty of adults around, that doesn't necessarily mean your children are safe.
According to the Children's Safety Zone, since the beginning of the year 14 children have drowned in Arizona.
Eleven of those cases happened in Maricopa and Pinal counties.
"I think we have to treat a pool like a street," explained Bob Hubbard, owner of Hubbard Family Swim School. "We cannot be cavalier about it. Drowning is silent. Everybody has this perception that you're going to hear a child cry for help. They're not. They're going to slip under the water."
Hubbard and his team have been teaching swimming and pool safety lessons for more than 25 years.
"Safety - securing your pool is number one," he said. "Learning to swim is number two."
Having a responsible adult on guard while your children are in the water is an absolute must.
"I just make sure that I've always got my eyes on the children," said Angie Stewart, who's a mother to two little girls.
But Stewart said she has noticed parents at pool parties tend to pay more attention to each other.
"Our concept is: If everybody is watching, nobody is watching," said Hubbard.
So, for pool parties, Hubbard recommends making a water-watcher tag with your kids which the adults will wear.
"You would be amazed when you put the water-watcher tag on, for 10 or 15 minutes, your antennae goes up and your responsibility gets a lot more focused," he said.
After those 15 minutes are up, hand the water-watcher tag to someone else and go enjoy yourself.
"With lifeguarding and things like that, we've learned there's a 10, 15, 20 minute focus period where somebody can be watching and be attentive and then they need to do something else," Hubbard explained. "Fresh eyes can see fresh things."
Stewart said the water-watcher tag is a safety tool she's willing to use.
"I think it would just maybe hit it home a little more, that you have somebody who's ‘representing' for the pool party," she said.
To learn more about pool and water safety, visit the following websites:
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