Seattle Parks and Recreation Jesús Aguirre, Superintendent
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Water Safety Tip for Families


Insist on Adult Supervision.

  • Swim in areas where there are lifeguards when possible.
  • Constantly watch your children in or near the water.
  • Keep young children within arm's reach.
  • Assign adults to watch children at social events.
  • Never drink or allow the use of alcohol or other drugs during water and boating activities or while supervising children.

Learn to Swim.

  • If you don't know how to swim well, find someone to teach you.
  • Learn to tread water for at least 10 minutes.
  • Make sure your children learn to swim. Upgrade their swimming skills each year. Check about lessons at your local pool or lifeguarded beach.

Know the Water.

  • Make sure the water is safe for diving. When in doubt, don't dive or jump.
  • Check for hidden objects, currents and water plants.
  • Be aware that cold water can kill, even on hot summer days. Stay close to shore and rest if you are cold or tired.

Wear a Life Vest.

  • Always wear a life vest when you are on a boat, innertube or raft, even if you can swim. Children also need life vests on docks and when they are near the water.
  • Wear a life vest if you are swimming in lakes and rivers. It's easy to misjudge the water and your swimming skills. Trouble can happen quickly.
  • Life vests allow you to swim and cool off. They allow a full range of motion to do all your strokes (except swimming under water).
  • Make sure your life vest is U.S. Coast Guard approved.

Know what to do in an Emergency.

  • Learn child and adult CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation).
  • Bring a cell phone with you or know where to find the nearest phone.
  • Dial 911 in an emergency.

Find out more information at:

Updated January 23, 2007
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