Slippin’ and Slidin’…SAFELY!

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waterpark lifeguard

Sweet summertime is quickly coming to an end, but the South Louisiana heat is still in full force. Many people will be headed to enjoy water parks for one last HOORAH before school starts again. Lexlee’s Kids wants to make sure that you and your families enjoy some safe last-minute summer fun!

Plan your day at the park with safety in mind. Water park safety is a partnership between parents and parks. Parents should always directly supervise their children, don’t leave your child’s safety to the water park alone. Who’s your water watcher??? The one who will do nothing, but watch the kiddos while in the water?

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when visiting a water park:

  • Park staff will yell it all day long…NO RUNNING! Slips and falls are common at water parks.
  • Children under 48″, non-swimmers, and weak swimmers should wear a Coast Guard approved life vest while enjoying water park attractions. Bring your own if you are unsure of availability and fit.
  • Dress appropriately, including water shoes, a hat, and loose shirt for when you’ve had enough sun. Monitor the amount of sun your children take in.
  • Apply waterproof sunscreen before leaving home (reapply throughout the day). Sun screen does not protect instantly!
  • Drink plenty of fluids (avoid beverages with sweeteners or with caffeine).
  • Read the signs at every water park attraction and listen to all audio instructions provided by recordings or staff. Obey all rules and experience-level guidelines.
  • Follow the lifeguards’ instructions and signal them if you see someone in trouble. Remember, drowning is typically a silent killer. Distress splashing could be mistaken as child’s-play, and remember a person who is drowning may not necessarily scream for help.
  • Like visits to amusement parks and attractions designating a meeting place is always smart in the instance someone is separated from your party.  The buddy system is an excellent way to ensure no children are left alone. Many families will arrive early to get a “good” spot to set up for the day. Everyone knows that’s water park 101 :)

What other rules do you put in place for your little water bugs???

Enjoy the rest of your summer! Join hands with Lexlee’s Kids in caring for your kids’ safety. If you have any questions about water park safety, feel free to post here or contact Lexlee’s Kids at 225.372.3991.

Co-written by: Donna Theriot, 2014 Spring SLU Intern

Life’s a Breeze: Infant Life Vests!

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untitledSpring has sprung, the weather is warming up, the pool is being cleaned and the river is calling.  Did you know drowning is the third leading cause of death among children?!? With that thought in mind, we know about the common flotation devices for older toddlers and children, but what about the infant with the cutest shades, hat and swimsuit on the water?

Did you know they make infant life vests?

Infant life vests can be very helpful in preventing drowning injuries and death.  There are different types to choose from, but make sure you are on the lookout for one with a crotch strap to ensure that the vest stays in the correct position while your water baby is enjoying a dip in the pool.  Some are also more comfortable than others are, and maybe paying a little more will make a big difference in comfort and fit.  Check this little vest out! The design allows your little fish to naturally float face up and has a large grab handle for easy retrieving. http://www.rei.com/product/834895/stohlquist-nemo-pfd-infants. (Demo Video Included!) This video demos the Niya infant life vest: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lm4-3ujt7tM.

Colors are not only for fashion, but for safety too!

Think bright orange, yellow, red and green! If you are headed out on the open water the vest should be a bright color for best visibility, and coast guard approved.  In Louisiana, life vests are required for all boat passengers under the age of 16, but we feel ALL passengers, no matter age, weight or size should vest up! Drowning, cramps and other unforeseen risks are not specific to a certain age…it could happen to ANYONE!

Foam filled fun!

Flotation devices that cannot deflate are the best choice for added safety (life jackets, PDFs, swimsuits with flotation foam). Blow up “floaties” are fine for play, but for safety, you run the risk of deflation.

Examples for older children:

Want more water safety?  Check out some of our past articles at: http://www.lexleeskids.org/category/water-safety.

The links provided are only examples. Lexlee’s Kids is not promoting a particular brand, business or site. Join hands with Lexlee’s Kids in caring for your kid’s safety!   If you have questions or concerns about summer/water safety, post here or contact Lexlee’s Kids at (225) 372-3991.

Co-Written by: Erica Casanova, 2013 Fall SLU Intern

 

Cool by the Pool!

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Did you know portable pools are a great place to cool off AND pose great risk for drowning in young children? Make sure your kids are always supervised around the silent killer that offers loud fun…WATER! Silence is not good, kids having fun in the water are loud! Kids in danger in the water are silent! Empty and flip your portable pool over everyday. We know…What a pain and waste of water! But, it helps with germs, and is better than the unthinkable alternative. Not just for your kids, unexpected neighborhood kids too!

Awesome Videos: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/portable-pools-increase-drowning-risk/story?id=13869625#.UaTu6tI6OSo

Who is your water watcher? The person who’s sole responsibility is to watch the water…no phones, no books, no magazines, no looking away, no running in for a sec…just watching the water. Even when watching, determining that a person is drowning can be difficult. Screaming loudly…NOPE, they can barely breathe. Waving their hands in the air…NOPE, they will likely push arms downward in an effort to push their heads above water.

Three quick tips: 1. learn to swim, 2. know cpr, 3. be close (never swim alone, always with a buddy).

REMEMBER: a drowning person will pull you down, so flotation devices are a MUST!

Planning to have a splashing good time at the water park this summer? SUPERVISION! Read all posted signs and follow all rules.  Note that all slides, rides, and equipment are not created equal. Pay attention to the depth of the water and how to use each ride safely.  Before you start down a slide or ride, be in the correct position and prepare for landing!

Great Resource: http://www.poolsafely.gov/.

Previous Lexlee’s Kids Article: http://www.lexleeskids.org/category/summer-safety.

Join hands with Lexlee’s Kids in caring for your kid’s safety!   If you have questions or concerns about summer/water safety, post here or contact Lexlee’s Kids at (225) 372-3991.

Safe Summer Splash!

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Lexlee’s Kids is heating up for a safe summer sizzle, and we would like you and your family to splash into safety!  Although swimming, boating and fishing are fun summer activities, danger could be near if the proper precautions are not taken.  Be sure to keep a keen eye on those little fish when in or around water.

David

Life jacket requirements depend on the size of the boat but ALL vessels must have at least one U.S. Coast Guard approved wearable personal flotation device per person on board and persons 16 and younger should wear a life jacket at all times while on board.

Coast Guard-approved life jackets are now more attractive and comfortable to wear. A properly fitted life jacket or PFD can help prevent drowning.  Inflatable floating products are not safety devices and can deflate if punctured.  Look for U.S. Coast Guard approved PFDs.

  • Type I:  (Offshore life jacket) Best for open, rough or remote waters
  • Type II:  (Near-shore buoyant vest) Good for calm or inland waters
  • Type III:  (Flotation aid) Good for conscious users in inland waters
  • Type IV:  (Throwable device) to be used in addition to wearable PFDs
  • Type V:  (Special use device) More convenient or useful for specific activities

Fishin’ for Safety:

Make sure to look behind you before throwing your line.  You do not want your catch of the day to be your fishing friend.  Do not leave your tackle on the ground; save it for the fish.

Alyssa and Daddy

The Sunny South:

You are my Sunshine never had more meaning!  When you are having fun in the sun, do not go sunny side up.  Apply sunscreen at least 30 minutes before going outside.  Use SPF of 15 or greater to protect against UVA and UVB rays, even on cloudy days.  Reapply sunscreen every two hours, or after swimming or sweating.

Stay in the shade whenever possible, and limit sun exposure during the peak intensity hours – between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.  Use extra caution near water and sand as they reflect UV rays and may result in a well-done kiddo.  Wearing a hat, sunglasses and using an umbrella may help protect you and your little ones from the sun.  Be sure to pack plenty of drinking water!

Safe Summer Splash:

Keep rescue equipment, such as:  A shepherd’s hook – a long pole with a hook on the end; life preserve and a portable telephone near when staying cool by the pool. 

Installing a fence at least four-feet high around all four sides of the pool will help keep the little ones away from the water.  The fence should not have openings that a young child could use to get over, under or through.  Make sure pool gates self-close and have a self-latch at a height children cannot reach.

Who is your water watcher, the person who is assigned to watch the children around water and only that?  The summer season is a time for fun and special memories.  Add safety to your summer plan, and create memories that will bring a smile to your face.  Join hands with Lexlee’s Kids in caring for your kid’s safety. If you have any questions or comments feel free to post them here or contact Lexlee’s Kids at 225-761-7272 or www.lexleeskids.org.

Are Your Kids Out of Sight?

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In the summer in the south, we all love fun in the sun and in the pool.  Especially our kids.  Supervision is crucial with children around.

In most cases, when a child accidentally drowns in a pool or spa tub, the person supervising the child checked on them just minutes before being found unresponsive.  Drowning is a silent killer, and drowning is swift.  A momentary distraction-conversations with others, talking or texting on the phone, or walking away for just a moment is all the time it takes; children can drown in mere seconds.

When we are enjoing the water, we don’t think it will happen to us, yet drownings remain the leading cause of death for children between the ages of 1 and 4.  Today, 3 children will die from drowning.

Here are some precautions for parents and caregivers to portect our children while enjoying the summer fun:

 

 

 SUPERVISION

  • Be on the lookout! Never take your eyes off chlidren in the water and always designate someone as the “water watcher”.
  • Teach your children to swim only when there is an adult to supervise.
  • Have a phone with you in case of an emergency.

KNOW BASIC WATER SAFETY SKILLS

  • Know how to swim and teach your children to swim.
  • Learn CPR.
  • Make life jackets a must.  Make sure kids wear life jackets in and around natural bodies of water, such as lakes or the ocean.

FENCE IT OFF

  • Install a 4-foot barrier such as a fence with a self-closing and self-latching gate around pools.
  • Pool fences should completely separate the house and play area from the pool.
  • Install alarms on all gates and doors that are near pools.

BEWARE OF ENTRAPMENTS

  • Do not allow children to play or swim near drains or suction outlets, especially in spas and shallow pools.
  • Never allow children in a pool or spa that has a loose, broken or missing drain cover.
  • Report  missing, loose or broken drain covers immediately.

For tips for safety around pools visit www.poolsafely.gov. Here’s a wbiste designed for kids to learn more about safety and fun in and around the water. www.splashzoneusa.com

Happy Swimming!

Lexlee

BOATING FUN!

David--fishing and being safe!

It’s July 4th weekend and boaters will be out in record numbers looking for some fun in the sun!  Do you know the first and most important step you can take for staying safe on the water while boating? Wearing a life jacket!  Statistics show that 90% of  individuals that drowned while boating were not wearing life jackets.

Our family loves to be on the water and our children know that it is mandatory to always wear a life jacket.  Even David our two year old understands he cannot step foot onto a boat without his life jacket!  Our teenager and all of her friends are aware that while boating is fun, it can also be dangerous. 

David- boating, fishing and being safe!

Remember that all boating vessels are required to have a correct personal floatation device, or “life vest” on board for each passenger. As of July 2009, Louisiana Law requires all passengers 16 and younger to wear a life vest at all times.

Take time to prepare for a safe holiday weekend! Go to www.boat-ed.com to see if your boat is safe, legal and ready for a weekend of fun!

We hope you have a wonderful and safe holiday weekend and summer on the water! 

Lexlee