Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Child Drownings - Responsibility Around Water 2



Children Drown in 20 seconds!

TV in Melbourne Australia has been airing advertisements about keeping close supervision on children near water.

Viewed from underwater, looking up to the sky with a digital clock counting up to 20 seconds, it is a very powerful add.

20 Seconds is all it takes for a child to drown is what the an announcer says.

This add is so effective and it just promoted me to draw peoples attention, again, to the how desperately important it is to watch your children near the water.

As pool life guard it is the least pleasurable part of my job to have to confront Stupid parents that think it is OK to let their 5 year old do dog paddle in the deep end without them being in the water supervising them.

Sensible people would be aghast to hear the dumb, dumb and dumber responses life guard are give when the they insist that a child of that age and that skill level in not safe in the water without direct "arms length" supervision. Not to mention the abuse you get when you enforce such rules.

An don't get me started on the definition of supervision we are given. A parent, 15 meters away, reading a newspaper "but I am supervising" she said. It sometime take all my strength not to kick their backside all the way into the pool to get their child out. Give me all the abuse you like lady I feel good about the fact that I possibly saved your child from the morgue today.

I just want to clarify something however. In a post I made some time ago where I was ranting just as vehemently called "Child Drownings - Responsibility Around Water" I said that it only takes 4 seconds for a child to drown. Was I wrong? No!

If we were going to spit hairs we could say that even the add,, that I have been praising is wrong in that clinical death takes up to 7 min sometimes more. But once a child has breathed in water the likelihood of getting that water out and reviving them diminished dramatically. The add is based on the assumption that a child could normally only hold their breath for 20 second.

Consider this: a child falls in to 2 in (about 4cm) of water, its cold, they get a shock, they don't hold their breath but suck in a full lung of water. This all takes 4 seconds.


But in the end does it matter? Just watch your children "like a hawk" around water.

To do anything else is just plain STUPID!

Richard

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