Summer of Safety

From Sleep Safety, to Swim Safety to tips to keeping kids out of hot cars.

Neighbors 4 Neighbors and our partners at the Children's Services Council of Broward Count work to spotlight several issues over the summer to keep kids safe.  The Water Smart campaign aims to remind families of the many free and low cost swim safety classes offered in our area.  With warm weather all year long many look to cool down at South Florida’s beaches and pools with your family. It is in our best interest to know what tips can help keep our kids stay safe when they are frolicking in the water, both outdoors and indoors. As much fun as playing in the water can be, it is the leading cause of death among children between the ages of 1 and 4 years old. According to the CDC and Florida Health, Florida has the highest unintentional drowning rate in the nation for the 1–4 year old age group.  In 2013, Florida had the highest unintentional drowning rate in the nation for the 1–4 year old age group with a drowning rate of 7.54 per 100,000 population. Florida had the second highest drowning rate in the nation for the 1–14 year old age group with a drowning rate of 2.54 per 100,000 population. These stats have sadly stayed the same over the years. 

  • Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death among children ages 1 – 4.
  • Broward County has one of the highest rates of drowning fatalities among children ages 1 to 4 each year.
  • Broward County has an average of 8 drowning fatalities annually among children ages 1 to 4.
  • Most children who die from a drowning were never intended to be in the water . . . they wandered away from a supervised area to enter water alone.
For this reason, Neighbors 4 Neighbors wants to give you some swim safety and drowning prevention tips from for you and your family to stay safe and avoid becoming another tragic statistic.  

In Broward - Check out Water Smart Broward for coupons for swim safety classes, tips and more.
In Miami - Contact the YMCA of South Florida for swim safety classes, tips and more. 

Here are the top tips we gathered from the CDC and Safe Kids Worldwide: 

Indoor Tips:

·    Never leave your child unattended in your pool or bathtub

·     Empty all tubs, buckets, containers and wading pools immediately after use

·     Once bath time is over, immediately drain the tub.

·     Keep doors to bathrooms and laundry rooms closed.

·     Put the cell phone away; give young children 100 percent of your attention when they are near or around water.

 Outdoor Tips:

·     Supervise when in or around water

·      Use the buddy system

·      Don’t let swimmers hyperventilate before swimming underwater or try to hold their breath for long periods of time

·      Learn Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)

·      Learn to swim. 

If you (or anyone in your family) do not know how to swim, no worries, below you will find links to free and low cost swim lessons in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties.


The Look Before You Lock Campaign reminds people to check the back seat for children who may be overlooked when getting out of the car. 

Summer is approaching and the temperatures are rising quick; some already feel the blistering heat, and it is only springtime! However, as the warmness across South Florida continues to increase, it is of the upmost importance to understand the health effects our weather can have for children. While many are excited for vacation season and the opportunity to take road trips with the family, this can also be a dangerous environment for the kids.  Did you know that heat strokes are one of the leading causes among children?  According to the Office of the Administration for Children’s and Families, from 1998-2013, 606 children died due to heatstroke, representing 61% of total non-crash fatalities in this age group. This is due to the fact that a child’s body can overheat easily, so children under four years old are at the greatest risk for heat-related illness. Not to worry, though; these deaths are 100% preventable.Neighbors4Neighbors, along with the Children’s Services Council of Broward County, would like to remind you of a few simple tips on how to play a role in protecting your child.


·         Never leave a child unattended in a vehicle—even if the windows are partially open or the engine is running with the air conditioning on. Vehicles heat up quickly; if the outside temperature is in the low 80s, the temperature inside a vehicle can reach deadly levels in only 10 minutes, even with a window rolled down 2 inches.

·         Always make a habit of looking in the vehicle—front and back—before locking the door and walking away.

·         Get in touch with designated family members if a child who is regularly in your care does not arrive as expected.

·         Create reminders to ensure that no child is accidentally left behind in the vehicle. Place an item that is needed at your final destination in the back of the vehicle next to the child or place a stuffed animal in the driver’s view to indicate that a child is in the car seat.

·         If someone else is driving your child, or your daily routine has been altered, always check that your child arrived safely.

 If you see a child alone in the car, TAKE ACTION:

Don’t wait more than a few minutes for the driver to return. Keep in mind that it is okay to get involved in the situation—it is our duty to protect the children. Also, “Good Samaritan" laws offer legal protection for those who offer assistance in an emergency. If the child is not responsive or is in Distress, take the following steps immediately:

·         Call 911.

·         Get the child out of the car.

·         Spray the child with cool water (not in an ice bath).

·         If the child Is responsive stay with the child until help arrives.

·         Have someone else search for the driver or ask the facility to page them.

Heatstroke in vehicles is the leading cause of all non-crash-related fatalities involving children 14 and younger. Especially vulnerable, are children four and under because their bodies overheat more quickly. Florida ranks 4th in the U.S. in the number of hyperthermia deaths of children in vehicles. Not surprising: even with a window rolled down a few inches, if the outside temperature is in the low 80s, as is often the case in Florida, the temperature inside a vehicle can reach deadly levels in as little as 10 minutes. On average, 38 children die in hot cars each year in the U.S. from heat-related deaths after being trapped inside motor vehicles. Even the best of parents or child care provider can overlook a sleeping child in a car, and the end result can be injury or even death.


To get a Look Before You Lock sticker for your vehicle call 211.

Links to apps & alerts to remind you when a child is in the car: