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Swimming, boating, fishing … it’s time to enjoy activities on or near the water. It’s also a great time to review water safety. Drownings are a leading cause of injury death for children ages 1 to 14 and three children die each day in the U.S. because of drowning. Nationally, drowning kills more children ages 1 through 4 than anything else except birth defects.

Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) data show there were 55 unintentional drowning deaths in 2018.

Whether in swimming pools or recreational waters like lakes or ponds, it is important for adults to make safety the top priority for everyone in or near the water:

  • Adults should always provide direct supervision of young children and non-swimmers.
  • Formal swimming lessons can reduce the risk of drowning. Learn to swim and teach children to swim.
  • Learn CPR.
  • Coast Guard-approved life jackets can reduce the risk of drowning.
  • Do not mix alcohol with your day on the water. Alcohol affects your judgement, coordination and sense of balance.

For more drowning prevention tips, visit https://www.idph.iowa.gov/swimmingpoolsandspas/prevention.