As we move into the hottest part of summer, many people will be spending a lot of time in water - having fun and staying cool. Water safety is a key concern, and it is important that everyone is aware of the key signs indicating that someone is in real destress, and in danger of drowning.
Look for these signs of drowning when persons are in the water:
- Head low in the water, mouth at water level
- Head tilted back with mouth open
- Eyes glassy and empty, unable to focus
- Eyes closed
- Hair over forehead or eyes
- Not using legs - vertical
- Hyperventilating or gasping
- Trying to swim in a particular direction but not making headway
- Trying to roll over on the back
Sometimes the most common indication that someone is drowning is that they don't look like they're drowning. They may just look like they are treading water and looking up at the deck. One way to be sure is to, ASK them: "Are you alright?" If they can answer at all - they probably are. If they return a blank stare - you may have less than 30 seconds to get to them. And parents: children playing in the water make noise. When they get quiet, you need to get to them and find out why.
Be aware, be safe - have a great summer!