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Doctors, Emergency Workers Call Fall Important Season for Child Water Safety

Local experts gathered at North Fulton Hospital in Roswell to increase awareness about drowning dangers to children.

Because it is past Labor Day, adults stop thinking about pools and water safety. But at an awareness event on Tuesday, held jointly between , , the and Sen. John Albers, experts suggested that this is a dangerous time for kids around pools and other bodies of water.

“We want to keep children’s safety on the forefront of our minds,” said Reg James, division manager for Rural/Metro Ambulance. “Backyard and neighborhood pools are still open.”

For U.S. children five to 14 years of age, unintentional injury is the leading cause of death. Drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional-injury deaths among children, following motor vehicle accidents. It is also the third most common cause of death for children under five, unintended or not.

But parents’ focus on water safety diminishes in the fall. Most children who drowned in pools were in the care of one or both parents and were last seen within five minutes.

“Drownings are preventable deaths,” said James, at a press conference at North Fulton Hospital in Roswell.

Roswell Fire Chief Ricky Spencer noted that two children have drowned in Roswell in the last 10 years and that is two too many.

 “We’re proud to partner with the Roswell Fire Department in reminding our community about the ABCs of water safety,” James said.

The ABCs are:

(A)dults should supervise children in and around water. Remove children from the water for any distraction such as a telephone call.

(B)arriers between children and water can save a life. Have a fence that isolates your swimming pool and spa from the home and play yard.

(C)lasses in CPR for adults and swimming lessons for children will help everyone know what to do in an emergency.

“We are following the ABCs to prevent drowning,” said state Sen. John Albers (R-Roswell). “We need to protect children throughout the year." 

The offers swimming lessons for people of all ages.

Matthew Reedy September 14, 2011 at 02:59 PM
This article is awesome! With drowning being the second leading cause of unintentional death among children ages 1 to 4 years and children 10 to 14 years, it's great to see some press on Water Safety. One of the most important skills a child can learn for water safety is the backfloat. Parents should practice with their child jumping in and then teach them to roll over to their backs and yell for help. When they are good enough they should try it with their clothes on.
DandB January 15, 2012 at 11:41 PM
1-2 children under the age of 18 are dying from asthma attacks per year in and around Atlanta Suburbs, THAT IS ONE OR TWO TOO MANY. It would benefit all citizens relying on Roswell Fire Department, Rural/Metro Ambulance and North Fulton Regional Hospital to focus on better preparedness in following protocols for Asthmatics. Asthma is becoming more and more prevalant and death from an asthma attack is preventable.
Barbara Atkins January 22, 2012 at 09:42 PM
I agree with the comment by DandB. Asthma related deaths are increasing especially among children and since Atlanta is the country's worst city for asthma sufferers it would be wise for emergency responders to be carefully trained when dealing with patients who have emergency asthma incidents or for that matter are going into anaphalactic shock for severe allergic reactions. This should include police and firemen as well as ambulance personnel. Time is of the essence in these situations and there must be a protocol that is followed very carefully for the victim to have the best chance of recovery.

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