As part of the 27th edition of the National Drowning Prevention Week, the Super Aqua Club is proud to be an ambassador and to inform its visitors on the importance of proper preparation for safe swimming. As always, safety is our main priority and it is even more so during a summer where temperatures and summer conditions are conducive to the search for water points to cool off.
Raising awareness of the potentiel dangers
As of July 20, 2020, the Société de sauvetage has recorded 52 drownings for the year 2020, compared to 36 for the same date in 2019. Each year, the causes of drowning are very similar:
- 1 child who escapes from parental supervision to play or to continue swimming after a swim that has been completed for some time;
- 1 flotation device that remained in the bottom of the boat because the person had no intention of jumping into the water;
- 1 drink too much, which makes challenges more enjoyable, but also makes the reflexes slower …
Choosing a safe bathing area and having the resources to prevent drowning is crucial. Attention and vigilance should always be the order of the day!
The difference between knowing how to swim and knowing how to bathe
“It’s one thing to know how to bathe, it’s another to know how to swim.”
Way too often, bathers think they can swim when they can only enjoy being in the water. The difference is very subtle, but it is important to differentiate these two in order to avoid incidents. To be able to bathe is to be in a pool of water and have fun in it without worrying about possible risks and without questioning your skills as a swimmer. Unlike bathing, knowing how to swim takes into account these three elements:
- Orienting yourself on the surface of the water after an unexpected fall;
- Staying on the surface and finding a safe place to swim;
- Swim to a safe place regardless of water conditions.
The Société de sauvetage offers the “Swim to Survive” program to teach children the basic skills needed to survive an unexpected fall into deep water and to help them develop their aquatic abilities. In addition to drowning prevention, this program encourages physical activity, builds self-esteem, helps children become familiar with aquatic facilities and introduces them to the aquatic and water environment.
Vigilance near water
At all times, it is important to be vigilant around water because accidents can happen quickly. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Designate a person to supervise children;
- Remind everyone of the safety rules surrounding the water;
- Remind everyone of proper swimming behaviours;
- Avoid drinking alcohol near the water;
- Promote safe swimming areas that are adapted to the abilities of the swimmers;
- Always have flotation devices on hand for those in need.