Pool Safety and Children


Summer is here, and that means lots of time in the swimming pool for kids and their parents. Swimming is one of those low-cost summer activities that define summer vacation. Before jumping in, though, make swimming pool safety a priority.

Hundreds of people die in pool-related accidents each year. Many of those who drown are children. Consider these sobering statistics from the CDC:

  • From 2005-2009, there were an average of 3,533 fatal unintentional drownings (non-boating related) annually in the United States — about ten deaths per day
  • On average, two of the 10 people who die from unintentional drowning each day are children aged 14 or younger.
  • More than 30% of children ages 1-4 who died from an unintentional injury died as a result of drowning.
  • Most drownings of children aged 1-4 years old occur in home swimming pools.

While there is no substitute for adult supervision and responsible play, there are steps pool owners can take to make their swimming pools safer for families, friends and neighborhoods.

  • Build a Fence Around Your Yard. In most areas, this isn’t just a best practice – it’s the law. A yard fence is a first step in creating a safer pool environment. Be sure your fence is sufficiently tall, sturdy and has a lock.
  • Install a Pool Fence. An ordinary fence around your yard is a good start, but it’s not enough. A fence designed to go around your swimming pool can reduce the risk of an unwatched child falling into the pool. A good swimming pool fence encloses the swimming area but can be removed when necessary.
  • Choose Non-Slip Flooring. Rubber, non-slip flooring can be installed on the concrete decking that surrounds your pool. This important safety material can reduce the risk of an accidental slip into the pool. A wide range of colors and designs is available, so you don’t have to sacrifice aesthetic appeal for safety.
  • Add a Pool Alarm. A pool sensor is a simple device that alerts you when a person or pet falls into the pool. The unmistakable siren can instantly notify you of a dangerous situation.
  • Install a Safety Pool Cover. A strong, secure pool cover can “lock” your pool and protect your family against accidents or unsupervised swimming.

Ultimately, the best way to prevent drowning is to be vigilant, to play safely, and to know proper rescue procedures. In the meantime, these pool safety enhancements can make your family’s swim environment much safer.

About the Author: Gary Hohne is President & CEO of Hohne Pools, one of the oldest pool builders in Maryland

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Comments

  1. This is such great information for this time of year. Thanks. Pool safety is so important.

  2. I recently had a cousin pass away from drowning he was 14. Please keep all children within arms reach and an eye on each and every one of them. It is something I would never want to wish on anyone.

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