Preventing Drowning and Non-Fatal Submersions

The Pool Safely campaign is designed to alert consumers and industry professionals to the numerous water safety steps that can be adopted to significantly reduce the number of child drowning deaths and submersion injuries that occur each year in the United States.

Drowning Prevention ImageThe Pool Safely campaign recommends critical water safety steps to help prevent drowning and non-fatal submersion injuries in residential and public pools and spas:

Staying Close, Being Alert and Watching Children in and Around the Pool

  • Always watch your child when they are in or near a pool or spa
  • Teach children basic water safety tips
  • Keep children away from pool drains, pipes and other openings to avoid entrapments
  • Have a portable telephone close by at all times when you or your family are using a pool or spa
  • If a child is missing, look for him or her in the pool or spa first
  • Share safety instructions with family, friends and neighbors

Learning and Practicing Water Safety Skills

  • Learn how to swim and teach your child how to swim
  • Learn to perform CPR on children and adults, and update those skills regularly
  • Understand the basics of life-saving so that you can assist in a pool emergency

Having the Appropriate Equipment for Your Pool or Spa

  • Install a four-foot or taller fence around the perimeter of the pool and spa and use self-closing and self-latching gates; ask your neighbors and community groups to do the same at all residential and public pools
  • If your house serves as a fourth side of a fence around a pool, install door and window alarms and always use them
  • Install pool and gate alarms to alert you when children go near the water
  • Ensure any pool and spa you use has compliant drain covers, and ask if you do not know
  • Maintain pool and spa covers in good working order
  • Consider using a surface wave or underwater alarm
  • Have life-saving equipment such as life rings and reaching poles available for use

Who is Virginia Graeme Baker?

Seven-year-old Virginia Graeme Baker’s tragic death inspired her family to advocate for pool and spa safety and moved Congress to act to prevent entrapments. 
Read more about her story
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The Pool and Spa Safety Act: Staff interpretation and updates

 

Find the most up to date requirements for the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act.