Summer of Safety
In Partnership with
Neighbors 4 Neighbors and our partners at the Children's Services Council of Broward County are working 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. From 2018 to 2020 combined, Florida was ranked the highest in the U.S. for unintentional drowning death rate among children ages 1 to 4 years (6.24 per 100,000 population). Florida had the highest unintentional drowning death rate of 3.19 per 100,000 population among children 0 to 9 years of age compared to other states (CDC national injury data). Annually there are enough children under the age of 5 lost to drowning (50 in 2019, 60 in 2020, and 75 in 2021) to fill three or four preschool classrooms.
These stats have sadly stayed the same over the years.
For this reason, Neighbors 4 Neighbors wants to give you some swim safety and drowning prevention tips 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-Dade and Broward - 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:
· 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.
· Supervise when in or around water - Designate a Water Watcher
· 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.
LOOK BEFORE YOU LOCK:
Summer is here and the temperatures are rising quickly!
However, as the warmness across South Florida continues to increase, it is of the utmost importance to understand the health effects our weather can have on children. While many are excited about 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? 948 children have died due to Pediatric Vehicular Heatstroke (PVH) since 1998, according to NoHeatStroke.org, a nonprofit organization that seeks to track every child hot-car death in America. 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.
Neighbors 4 Neighbors, 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 childcare providers 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: