13 On Your Side's Arlette Yousif speaks with YFD and Valley Aquatic Center about best practices in the water.
YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - With the temperatures rising, many in the desert southwest will likely want to cool down in a nice pool.
Whether it’s a pool in the backyard or a public pool, it’s important to know how to be as safe as possible in and around the water.
Adult supervision is always important, even if there are lifeguards on duty.
Life jackets that are U.S. Coastguard approved are welcome in public pools, according to the Valley Aquatic Center.
“We do not allow blow-up floaties. Sometimes you’ll see parents bring in carriages for their babies. It’s just for our safety that we need to see the bottom of the pool in case of any patrons that are underneath. So just for our visibility,” says Valley Aquatic Center Manager Dennis Norris.
But for home pools, floaties, pool barriers, and gates are good safety measures to take.
“Backyard pools, we have to take that responsibility on ourselves, and especially when it comes to child drowning. Most of those that we have had in our area have involved backyard pools,” explains Yuma Fire Department Public Information Officer Mike Erfert.
Erfert says we need to follow the ABCs. Constant adult supervision, buddy systems in the pool, and swimming classes to make sure adults and children know how to swim properly.
“That pool should be secure with a barrier fence at least five [feet] tall. And along with that, it should have self-closing, self-latching gates, and making sure that you don’t have things like pool furniture that are too close to the fence that a child could crawl over,” says Erfert.
Erfert says to secure all doors, including doggy doors so that children can not get to the pool without an adult watching them.
For that extra layer of protection, the Valley Aquatic Center in Yuma is open to the public. Details can be found on their website.