MCFRS News Release
Swimming Pool Safety Tips
Several Incidents Highlight Dangers of End of Swimming Season
Summer is coming to an end, but local community swimming pools will remain open for a few more weeks. Typically, this is a dangerous time of year for swimming pool accidents to occur. The men and women of the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service are hoping that everyone has a safe end of summer vacation and upcoming Labor Day Weekend. So far this year in Montgomery County several people have drowned and there have been several near drownings. In fact, Fire and Rescue personnel have responded to several dozens of incidents involving injuries from falls, trouble breathing, drowning and other medical emergencies at community and residential swimming pools this summer season.
Drowning is the second leading cause of death from unintentional injuries for people age 5 to 24, according to the National Safety Council. Nationally, about 5,000 people drown each year. For every drowning, it is estimated that there are four near-drowning that result in hospitalization. There have been several drowning incidents in the metro area this year.
Around 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, August 24, 2006 units from the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service were dispatched for a reported drowning at the Milestone Community Pool located in the 12700 block of Royal Carriage Drive, in Germantown. First arriving firefighters and emergency medical workers encountered CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation) in progress.
A few moments earlier lifeguards had found an 8 year-old boy in about 5 feet of water at the bottom of the pool. He was pulled from the water and first aid was immediately rendered by several lifeguards and bystanders as other called 911. He was treated on the scene by paramedics and transported to a nearby hospital. A short time later he succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced dead.
Around 4:45 p.m. on that same date, fire and rescue units were dispatched to the Quince Orchard Swim Center located in the 16600 block of Roundabout Drive, in Gaithersburg for a reported drowning. Lifeguards had located a 7 year-old girl in the water. Initially she was not breathing, but a lifeguard was able to assist her with rescue breathing. First arriving firefighters and emergency medical workers found her to be breathing on her own. She was treated on the scene and transported to a nearby hospital. She is reportedly stable, but in serious condition.
Childhood drowning can happen in a matter of seconds and typically occurs when a child is left unattended or during a brief lapse in supervision.
SWIMMIMG POOL SAFETY TIPS
We recommend the following helpful tips to make your swimming pool experience safe:
- Take swimming lessons
- There is no substitute for supervision
- Learn CPR.
- Play it safe around water. Stay out if there is no grown-up or lifeguard around.
- Follow posted rules. Example – Danger. No Swimming. No Diving. No Running.
- Swim only when rested.
- Never eat candy or chew gum when you are swimming – You could choke.
- Don’t mess around. Running, pushing, or shoving people can cause serious injuries to you or your friends.
- Get out of water if you hear thunder or see lightening.
- Stop, look and test before entering pool.
- When at a new swimming place – always check the surroundings and check with a lifeguard or grown-up.
- Always raise your hands over your head when diving. (NEVER let your friends dare you into diving dangerously)