There are many ways to enjoy a beautiful summer day. Some outdoor activities include time spent near the water. Whether it’s a day at the beach, boating on a lake, or swimming in the pool, it is essential to know the top safety tips to keep you and your family safe when near the water.
Never drink and drive while boating.
Water activities and alcohol are not a great mix. Operating a boat under the influence can significantly increase the risk of accidents. Alcohol impairs judgment, reaction time, and coordination, making it dangerous for drivers and passengers. Always be sure to designate a sober driver or choose alternative means of transportation if you plan to consume alcohol.
Wear a life jacket.
The number one safety precaution you can take when engaging in water activities is wearing a life jacket. Regardless of your swimming abilities, it is crucial to wear a properly fitted life jacket whenever you are on a boat, kayak, canoe, or participating in any water sports. In an emergency or accident, a life jacket can be a lifesaver by providing buoyancy and keeping you afloat.
Protect yourself from the sun.
While enjoying outdoor activities, it is sometimes easy to forget to apply or reapply sunscreen throughout the day. You have to remember that the sun’s rays can be intense, especially when reflecting off the water’s surface. Apply waterproof sunscreen with a high SPF before you leave the house, wear protective clothing, such as hats and sunglasses, and bring a long sleeve shirt to wear after you get out of the water. Also, do not forget to reapply sunscreen according to the directions and seek shade when needed.
Supervise children at all times.
Active supervision of children of any age is required when you are near the water. Never leave children unattended, even if they are playing in shallow water. Drowning can occur in a split second. It is essential to maintain visual contact with children around water. Set rules for the children and assign a responsible adult to be the designated supervisor to ensure the safety of children at all times.
Be cautious near open water.
When near open water, always be cautious and alert to potential hazards. Pay attention to signs and warnings, such as strong currents, rip currents, or deep water. Avoid swimming in high boat traffic areas and avoid swimming alone. Always stay within designated swimming areas whenever possible. Stay aware of others engaging in water sports, and keep your eyes out for other swimmers, boats, jet skis, and skiers.
Learn basic water safety skills.
Knowing basic water safety skills can be extremely valuable in case of an emergency. Consider enrolling yourself and your family members in swimming lessons and water safety courses. Learning how to swim, perform CPR, and learn rescue techniques can help you stay calm and be prepared to respond effectively in water-related emergencies.
Have an emergency plan.
Before heading out on the water, create and discuss an emergency action plan with everyone participating. This plan should include the steps to take in case of an accident, how to call for help, and the location of any emergency services nearby. Confirm with everyone their abilities to swim and how comfortable they feel being on the water.
By following these top seven safety steps, you can ensure a safer and more enjoyable experience when you are near the water this summer. Remember to stay aware, be prepared for emergencies, and prioritize the well-being of yourself and those around you. With proper precautions and responsible behavior, you can create lifelong memories while keeping water activities fun and accident-free. If you or anyone you know is involved in a water accident this summer, contact us at Harris Law to get the compensation you deserve.