Learning cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), first aid and other rescue techniques through ongoing certification courses is your final line of protection in preventing
accidental drowning and limiting the severity of injuries. Children of an appropriate
age and maturity should learn these same valuable techniques as well, as certification programs are widely available for kids.
Unfortunately, proven rescue techniques like CPR and first aid aren’t widely practiced outside the medical profession, meaning most bystanders can only dial 911 and wring their hands while waiting for emergency medical units to arrive.
The first is a simple, general unawareness of water dangers (especially to small
children) and that common sense practices and use of safety equipment that can
substantially reduce risk. Second, many people believe that learning CPR is too
difficult or that its inadvertent improper use may open up the practitioner to liability.
Both concerns can be addressed with an effective community-wide public educational
Beyond rescue techniques, the Safer 3 Water Safety Foundation strongly endorses keeping an emergency action plan, rescue equipment and telephone by the pool at all times. Having a plan of action in place can make life and death difference in the event of an emergency. A phone should always be at poolside, for emergency use and not to become a distraction from actively supervising children in the water. Proper safety equipment should always be present.
It's easy to find American Heart Association CPR classes at convenient locations and times near you. Click here to use the search tool to locate classes by scheduled training dates or location.