Keep Safe in the Water This Summer
The summer sun is baking everything in sight. You can watch the heat ripple and you wonder how everything doesn’t melt like one of those clocks in a Salvador Dali painting. Sounds like a great time for a swim. But while you’re imagining that cool water washing over you, it’s also a time to remember some basic swimming safety.
- Never Swim Alone. Swimming is not only more fun with friends, it’s also safer. Even if you’re healthy and are a good swimmer, you’re still at risk of drowning. Swimming alone dramatically increases that risk.
- Don’t swim while using drugs or alcohol. Safe swimming requires good coordination and good judgment, and drugs and alcohol make those a lot harder.
- Children are at particular risk of drowning. Never leave a young child unattended near the water and don’t trust a child’s life to another child.
- Protect your skin. Being in the water not only washes off any sunscreen you may have applied, but actually magnifies the effect of the sun on your skin. Limit your exposure during the hours of 10am to 4pm, and make sure to reapply sunscreen if you’ve been in the water for a while.
- Drink plenty of water. Playing in the sun and surf can dehydrate you far more quickly than you think.
- Learn to Swim. It may seem obvious, but a surprising number of Americans can’t swim. It’s your best defense against drowning. Many organizations like the Red Cross offer learn-to-swim courses.
Swimming can be great exercise and a great way to cool off. With these few simple precautions, you can make sure everyone has a great (and safe) time.