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National Surge In Child Drowning Incidents Serve As A Wake-up Call To Parents -- Experts Urge Active Parentlal Supervision 100% Of The Time


LOS ANGELES — With summer in full swing, kids are swimming to cool off. However, an alarming surge in the number of drowning incidents in residential swimming pools are on the way to claiming hundreds of Children’s lives across the country.

In 2004, more than 400 children under the age of five drown in backyard swimming pools. Already in 2005, the five states that lead the country with drowning tragedies -- Arizona, Florida, Texas, California, and New York -- report more than 150 children have drown in residential swimming pools.

The Center For Disease Control reports drowning is the leading cause of death for children under five, and drowning the second leading cause of death for children under 14. The agency also reports that for every child that drowns, six more children are involved in “near-drowning” incidents which lead to neurological damage, catastrophic medical costs, and years of therapy.

“Sadly, the family swimming pool is supposed to be the center of fun and recreation,” said Todd Appleman, founder of, a safety products company that markets the Safety Turtle immersion alarm. “The problem is, parents are unaware of how to minimize the danger. Clearly, a swimming pool is the single more serious danger that can be ound in any home"

He confirmed this after commissioning a national Harris Interactive survey of parents. “Only 41 percent of the parents polled said they have layers of protections installed around their pools. Such layers include ASTM standard fences with self locking gates, or even an alarm to alert adults in event a child falls into the pool unattended.”

The Problem Is Reaching Epidemic Proportions

Mr. Appleman added, "With more and more consumers purchasing portable pools at retail department stores, we fear the problem is only going to grow. These low cost pools are ofetn up to three feet deep and hold thousand of gallons of water. What’s worse, consumers are rarely surrounded these pools with a fence -- one of the key barriers to keep unattended children out of harm’s way.”

“These are just waitig for accidents to happen, added Appleman. I find it unfathomable to think that children are in danger more and more every day,“ said Mr. Appleman”

“Drowning is a silent death and it can happen in a matter of seconds,” said Appleman. “We are working very hard to help parents understand to understand that there is no substitute for active supervision supplemented by layers of protection.”

“The American Pediatrics Association and other organizations, have excellent tips on poll safety,” said Appleman. The four critical layers of protection that experts are campaigning for include the following:

 A 4 ft. high fence around the pool with a locking latching gate.

 Alarms on gates and doors that adjoin the pool area.

 A cover when should be locked over the pool and spa when not in uuse.

 An ASTM-approved pool alarm such as Stafty Turtle.

In addition to having these important layers of protection in place, Mr. Appleman recommends addtional precautions as a added measure of precaution:

 Never let a child swim without an adult present.

 Look in the pool first when a child is missing.

 Seconds count in preventing death or disability.

 Keep a phone is poolside in case of an emergency.

 Never leave toys in the pool area since they may intice children to the water.

 Above-ground pools should be secured and locked when not in use.

 Secure patio furniture that could be used to climb into the pool area.

 Discuss pool safety with babysitters.

 Show all adults how to use of alarms and lock gates.

 To prevent entrapment, have a professional inspect the drain suction fittings.

 Cover the pool and spa with a locking cover when the main drain.

For more information, visit and or call 1-800-892-9551.

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