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It only takes a few seconds for a child to drown or suffer irreversible, permanent damage from a near drowning. A toilet, bucket, hot tub bathtub, aquarium, or any other container of water can increase the risk for drowning. Drowning is the leading cause for unintentional injury deaths of children age 4 and younger. In children 14 and younger, drowning is second leading cause for unintentional injury fatalities.

Inside The House

  • Never leave small children alone around any container of water. This includes toilets, tubs, wading pools, spas, aquariums, and buckets.
  • Keep bathroom doors closed and secure toilet lids with lid locks.
  • Safeguard bathtubs and sinks used for bathing by using faucet covers and nonskid mats or decals.
  • Before bathing children, gather the soap, shampoo, toys, towel, diaper, clothing, and any other needed items before running the bath water. Place these items within easy reach.
  • After running bath water, check the water temperature before placing the child in the bath water.
  • Once your child is in the bath, don't leave for any reason. Children can drown in just a small amount of water. They can easily topple into the tub or toilet. It only takes a few seconds for a drowning to happen.
  • If you must leave the room for the telephone or door, take the child with you after taking the child out of the water and wrapping him in a towel.
  • To avoid falls and slipping under the water, always keep one hand firmly around the child when bathing him and keep the child sitting.
  • Ensure pet doors are inaccessible to young children. Young children like to crawl through the doors to gain access to the outside.

Outside The House

  • Never leave children alone with water including a pool, wading pool, pond, drainage ditch, or lake.
  • Stay with children swimming or playing in water. They need an adult or certified lifeguard to keep a constant watch.
  • Use approved life jackets.
  • Arrange for swimming lessons for your children with a qualified instructor.
  • Safeguard swimming pools. Use fences. Install self-closing and latching gates, and water surface alarms.
  • Completely remove pool covers when the pool is in use.
  • Make sure proper safety equipment is located near the pool.
  • Store water toys away from the pool when they are not in use.
  • Encourage safe practices. Don't assume young children will use good judgement and caution around water.
  • Be prepared for emergencies. Have a first-aid kit and emergency medical telephone contacts. Learn CPR.
  • Know if your child's friends have home pools.

I found Fathers For Equal Rights through my church. Fathers For Equal Rights empowered me to do the right thing for my son through critical knowledge, and strategic access to affordable legal assistance.
  -- David A. - Dallas, TX

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