Water Safety 7th Grade
Objective 4.4 • Create a plan to reduce the risk of water-related injuries.
Most Common Causes of Drowning: • Not knowing how to swim • Not wearing a life jacket • Lack of supervision (an adult watching you) • Diving in shallow water • Ocean current • River current
Most Common Causes of Drowning: • Going beyond their swimming ability • Getting tired • Horseplay/dares • Accidentally falling in • Leg cramps • Use of alcohol or other drugs
Diving: • Diving accounts for 10% of all the spinal cord injuries in the U.S. • Spinal cord injuries can result in paralysis or death. • Always check the depth of the water before diving. • Enter the water feet first to check the depth.
Diving: • The American Red Cross recommends that water be at least 9 feet deep to dive safely. • Check the bottom for objects. • Never dive in murky water. • Obey “No Diving” signs.
Personal Water Craft (jet ski) • Know and follow local laws and regulations regarding personal water crafts. • Take a boating safety course. • Always attach the shut-off lanyard. • Follow the traffic pattern of the waterway.
Personal Water Craft (jet ski) • Run your PWC at a slow speed until you are away from shore, swimming areas and docks. • Obey no-wake and speed zones. • Use caution around swimmers and surfers.
Personal Water Craft (jet ski) • Always wear Coast Guard approved PFD (personal floatation devices) when riding a jet ski. • Ride with a buddy and travel with another PWC, if possible. You never know when an emergency may occur. • Do not drink alcohol or use drugs.
Ocean Current • Rip currents cause most of the drownings in the ocean. Rip currents pull a person away from shore. • Don’t try to fight the current or swim against it. Call for help. • When you feel the current not pulling you out to shore, swim parallel to the shore until you are out of the rip current. • Then swim back to shore.
Beach and Surf Safety What are other guidelines that should be followed to stay safe at the beach? • Check with the lifeguard about surf and beach conditions before swimming. • Never swim alone. • Always swim close to the lifeguard stand.
Beach and Surf Safety • Don’t run and dive into ocean waves. • Obey warning signs (Example: Dangerous Current). • Make sure an adult is watching you.
"Every summer, emergency physicians see serious spinal injuries, including quadriplegia, because people dive headfirst into unknown water and strike the bottom," said Stauffer.” Another major cause of neck injuries is bodysurfing. It is caused when the swimmer's head or face strikes the bottom of the ocean. So check for depth and obstructions before diving, then go in feet first the first time; and use caution while bodysurfing, always extending a hand ahead of you." Source: http://www3.acep.org/patients.aspx?id=26164
River Current • Small river currents can be strong currents. • If caught in a river current: • Don’t try to swim against the current. • Float on your back, feet first downstream. • Shout for help.
River Safety Guidelines • Never swim alone. • Wear an approved PFD. • Keep a watch on water depth changes. The water depth in a river can change quickly due to recent storms. Get out of the water if it appears to be rising.
Boating • Know the state laws where you are planning to take your boat. • Everyone in the boat should wear a Coast Guard approved PFD (personal floatation device). • Anyone being pulled behind the boat must wear a PFD.
Boating • Make sure you tell someone where you are planning to go boating or fishing (in case of bad weather or engine problems).
Cold Exposure or Hypothermia The factors that contribute to cold exposure or hypothermia: • Temperature • Wet (rain, sweat, water) • Wind (blowing) Each one of these factors increase the likelihood of hypothermia and determine how quickly hypothermia will occur.
General Water Safety Rules • Learn how to swim. • Never swim alone. • Make sure you have adult supervision at all times. • Know your swimming limits and stay within them. • Watch weak swimmers when they are in the water. • Don’t encourage or dare others to do things that may be dangerous or they are not a strong enough swimmer to accomplish.
General Water Safety Rules • Don’t depend on floatation devices to stay afloat. Wear a Coast Guard approved PFD. This applies for babies and small children also. Floats and water wings are not reliable devices for keeping them afloat. • Swimming is a vigorous form of exercise so rest frequently. • Do not consume alcohol or any drugs.
General Water Safety Rules • Seek out local knowledge when swimming or diving in a new location. • Obey all warning signs. • Know and respect the water. Each body of water has its own hazard. • Learn CPR, especially if you have a swimming pool at your house.