Child - Safety - Home - Water safety Child - Safety - Home - Water safety

Water Safety

Shocking fact – a child can drown in just a few centimetres of water, in a very short space of time. Supervision is always required around water.

Another shocker – drowning is the 3rd highest cause of death in children under the age of 5.

Around a pool

  • Always maintain constant visual contact while your child is in the water.

  • Older children should not be left to supervise younger siblings.

  • Familiarise your child with water – take your child to infant aquatics classes so they can develop water confidence.

  • Fence your pool – a pool fence is essential as a barrier between the water and your child.

  • In South Africa – Swimming pools must have an SABS approved fence, with a lockable, self-latching, spring-loaded gate. This gate should NEVER be left open and there shouldn’t be any fence-gaps greater than 100mm. It is suggested that a pool net or cover is also added.

  • Inflatable toys are not life saving devices and do not keep your child safe.

  • Ensure there are no power lines or other electrical equipment near or around the pool or swimming area.

  • Normal nappies should not be worn in the water as they are unhygienic and can weigh the child down. Rather use a specialised product like Huggies® Little Swimmers.

  • Check that the depth of the water is marked and be careful when jumping or diving into water.

  • At parties and gatherings nominate a person to be the designated child watcher, so there is no confusion. If that person leaves, they must nominate someone else.

  • Don’t leave paddling pools in the garden.

  • Never leave a child alone around your pool, even for a few minutes to answer the phone etc.

  • Never allow yourself to be distracted while watching children around the pool.

  • Learn to perform child CPR – lives can be saved by immediate, effective First Aid.

  • As soon as your child is old enough, swimming lessons are a must.

In the bathroom

  • Keep the bathroom door shut. If it has a lock, ensure you can open this from both sides. Remove the key from the door after you’ve locked it. Hang on the top of the doorframe – out of reach of little hands.

  • Remember to lower the toilet seats. There are toilet seat guards available at hardware stores.

  • Never leave your children unattended in the bath.

  • Even bath seats require constant supervision.

  • Don’t use a bath on a stand once your baby can stand up.

  • Use a non-slip mat in the bath and on the floor.

  • Turn your hot water down to a maximum of 50ºC or less.

  • Always place cold water in the bath first and test before using.

  • Always empty the bath when done.

  • Lock away all medicines. Lock all cleaning products away. Install child locks on medicine cupboards. Also store razors and other hazardous products out of reach.

  • Cover nappy bucket with a secure lid and keep the bathroom door closed.

  • Make sure that the shower door is made of safety glass.

  • Avoid using detachable toilet cleaners in the toilet bowl.

  • Never use electrical equipment in the bathroom.


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