CHICAGO (CBS) — Over 4,000 people drown every year in the United States, which equates to more than ten people per day. Safety experts say learning to swim can be a life-saving skill.
Hot temperatures are expected this weekend and more people are expected to cool off by heading to backyard or neighborhood pools.
As CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports, it’s only a good time as long as everyone stays safe.
Cori Fiddes says even though her children are older and stronger swimmers, pool safety remains on her mind.
“We had a party last summer and considered whether we should have a lifeguard. When you have friends and everyone is visiting and talking, it’s hard to keep track of kids,” said Fiddes.
Fiddes and experts know pool time can turn tragic in seconds.
“Drowning in a pool is a silent event. It’s not like in the movies when people make a big deal. They go under and they’re down,” she said.
The death of Olympic skier Bode Miller’s 19-month-old daughter this week serves as a tragic reminder of how quickly it can happen.
“Part of pool code is the gate has to be self-closing,” said the President of Sunset Pools and Spa, Nick Luisi.
Luisi, says in Illinois, toddler-proof gate locks are required, as well as pool fences.
“And then it’s high so toddlers can’t reach it and get into the pool area,” said Luisi.
There are other technologies to keep pools secure, including automatic pool covers.
Luisi said, “They have .sensors that you can put in the water that will set off an alarm if something were to fall into the swimming pool.”
The Fiddes’ also have door alarms, which let anyone in the house know someone has stepped outside.
Safety experts, and parents alike, say the best way to keep kids safe is to keep watch while they’re in the pool.