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If you're preparing to host your first pool party for little ones, you have a lot to think about. Before themes, decorations, food, and games, the first priority of every pool party host is the safety of the guests, especially the kids. Here you'll find tips and tricks compiled from The Red Cross, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and swim instruction experts, to keep little swimmers happy and safe in the water.

Invest in the Right Pool Safety Equipment.

Even if you don't have kids in your home on a daily basis, your pool can pose a risk to neighboring children, not to mention your friends, relatives, and party guests. Every parent gets distracted now and then, especially in a loud, busy social event, and it only takes a few minutes to lose a child to the water. In fact, ABC News reports that drowning is the second leading cause of childhood fatalities in the U.S., with over 200 young victims in the summer of 2013 alone.

Installing successive barriers and alerts can save lives, and can also lower your homeowners insurance premiums by reducing the risk of an accident. The Red Cross recommends that you safeguard children with the following devices to help you child proof your pool:

  • A self-locking, self-closing pool fence with vertical bars spaced less than 4" apart: Christine Venzon from The Learning Channel notes that gates should open outward, away from the pool, to help keep toddlers out, and the child proof latches should sit high on the gate post.
  • A land line or wireless phone on the patio or porch facing the pool: This can be accessed quickly to call an ambulance, in case of an incident.
  • Child-proof door locks on household doors leading to the pool area: This helps to prevent small children from entering the pool area unattended.
  • An alarm that sounds when the door or pool gate opens, or when someone enters the water: A simple motion detector alarm can save lives by notifying you when a child is near the pool, or falls in.

There is additional equipment you can use to keep your guests safe. Some examples include:

  • A sturdy, child proof pool cover with metal fittings
  • A throwable life preserver
  • Age-appropriate personal flotation devices, such as life jackets
  • Scissors to cut hair or clothing caught underwater
  • A stocked first-aid kit

The American Academy of Pediatrics refers to these successive barriers and alerts as "layers of protection." It starts with the human element, namely close parental supervision, and moves outward to safety devices on doors, gates, and finally the pool itself. That way if one protection fails, another takes up the slack.

Posted 8:50 AM  View Comments

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Valdosta Insurance Services, Inc.
812 Northwood Park Drive l Post Office Box 2070
Valdosta, GA 31604-2070 l 
Phone: (229) 242-4560 l Phone: (888) 242-4560 l Fax: (229) 242-4561 
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