Swim experts share how parents can keep kids safe around pools

Published: May. 16, 2019 at 5:14 PM EDT
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School is almost out and summer is weeks away. That means pools and beaches will be packed. Swim experts are encouraging parents to enroll their child in a water safety class.

Daniel Smith helps children at the Salem YMCA put on their safety gear for class. Students learn how to blow bubbles, kick their legs, and use their arms in the water. Even if a child is at a pool with a lifeguard, swim experts say a person can drown in as little as 2 feet of water. "Young kids don't understand that concept of putting your feet back down," said Smith. "They can slip right under the water really quickly without a yell or a scream."

According to the CDC, more than 300 children under the age of 14 drown every year. That's why Andrea Powers enrolled her 3-year-old in a safety class. "Parents get distracted, there is a lot going on," said Andrea Powers. "It's important to teach your children how to survive and what to do in an emergency. "

With a trip to a water park soon, Powers said her son's training helps her feel more comfortable. "They retain it, especially at a younger age," said Powers. Experts say parents can enroll their child in a water safety class as early as 6 months. "Obviously the earlier, the better. It is never too late to learn how to swim," said Smith.

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