PCAO encourages pool safety as Summer approaches

(FLORENCE, AZ) - As the summer season approaches and pool season gets underway, the Pinal County Attorney’s Office is promoting preventative measures to ensure kids and families have a fun, and safe, Summer.

Drowning remains a significant public health concern, with tragic consequences that can be prevented through education and vigilant supervision. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), drowning is the leading cause of death among children aged 1 to 4 years old. Additionally, children aged 5 to 14 face a higher risk of drowning than any other cause except motor vehicle accidents.

To ensure you and your loved ones are safe around water, it is important to ensure there are layers of protection and all preventative measures are followed.

  1. Supervision: Active and constant adult supervision is crucial whenever children are in or near water. Designate a responsible adult who can actively watch children without distractions, especially during pool parties or gatherings.
  2. Swimming Lessons: Encouraging children and adults to learn how to swim can significantly reduce the risk of drowning. Enroll in swimming lessons at reputable aquatic centers or schools with certified instructors.
  3. Pool Barriers and Safety Measures: Install proper barriers, such as four-sided fencing, around pools to prevent unsupervised access. Ensure the fencing uses a self-closing and self-latching gate. Use pool alarms and safety covers when the pool is not in use.
  4. Life Jackets and Flotation Devices: Ensure that children and inexperienced swimmers wear properly fitted U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets when participating in water activities, including boating.
  5. CPR and First Aid Training: Learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and basic first aid techniques to respond effectively in case of emergencies. Quick and appropriate actions can make a crucial difference in saving lives.

By working together, we can create a culture of water safety, decrease the risk of drowning incidents, and protect our children.

With the summer season almost here, let us all commit to ensuring a safe and enjoyable summer for everyone. Together, we can prevent drowning incidents, protect our loved ones, and make this summer a memorable one for all the right reasons.

We also want to extend a special thank you to Ashley Ackerman, who partnered with us on the below PSA video to highlight drowning prevention measures. This is exceptionally personal to her, as her son Braxton, 4, died in a drowning incident in 2022. Ashley shares her story with the hope of raising awareness for other families. She also launched a drowning prevention website in her son’s memory.