Witnessing a Horrorific Scene...

Monday, July 9, 2012

A few weeks ago when I was visiting Chicago, I witnessed a horrific incident. A few family friends and I were at a public pool attempting to cool off and we were having a blast. Jumping off the diving boards, sliding off slides, eating ice-cream… you couldn’t beat that on a hot day. Suddenly, a whistle was blown and everyone was screaming to get out of the pool immediately and lifeguards were sprinting around the edges of the pool. It was a chaotic scene and everyone still had no idea what was happening. Eventually, everyone crowded around an area to see that a boy had drowned. There was a little four year old boy there who was laying there lifelessly on the ground. The life guards were working as hard as they could and continued CPR for over 20 minutes and once the paramedics arrived, they continued trying to save his life. The young boy was wheeled into the ambulance and his day at the pool would now become his last day living. It was terrifying to witness a scene like this. You read about it in the newspapers, hear about it on the news, but it is a rare and horrifying sight to see.

Many things about that day are still unclear and may never be clarified. What I personally took from that day was how important pool safety is. If you are a babysitting a child and in the pool, it only takes one minute of turning around for the child to be under water and unable to breathe. Also, never assume you are too good of a swimmer to drown. Some of the best swimmers have drowned and you are not exempt from it. Be careful and know the water you are swimming in. There can be dangerous currents in lakes and rivers, you can slip or get hurt in a public pool, and you could even get a cramp or pass out in your own pool. When swimming, take precautions. Follow basic rules at pools, sometimes pool tricks, diving, and playing chicken can be very dangerous. It is always a good idea to know the basics of life saving as well as being trained in CPR in case you are around during a pool accident and can help if professionals aren’t able to. For your own pool, consider having a pool safety kit that includes a flotation device, scissors (you may need to cut a pool cover or clothing during emergencies), a first-aid kit, and always have a dependable phone ready in case you need to make an urgent call to 911. Pools can be fun, but if you aren’t being safe, pools can become dangerous.

This summer, have fun in the sun and go for a swim! But before you jump in, know how to be a safe swimmer.

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