Whether you’re heading to the neighborhood pool or to your own backyard oasis, make sure you’re water competent this summer before diving in.

As drowning is the leading cause of death for children, it’s important to improve your family’s water competency to have an enjoyable, safe summer. The below tips from the American Red Cross can help prevent water dangers and help you respond quicker to water emergencies.

Water Smarts

  • Know your physical and medical limitations
  • Never swim alone
  • Swim sober
  • Wear a U.S. Coast Guard approved life vest
  • Know how to call for help

Learn Swimming Safety Skills

  • Enter water that is over your head, then return to the surface
  • Float or tread water for one minute
  • Swim a minimum of 25 yards
  • Exit the water

Helping Others

  • Watch children or weaker swimmers closely
  • Know the signs of drowning
  • Safely assist drowning persons- “reach or throw, don’t go”
  • Perform CPR and first-aid

IEMS wishes everyone a safe, fun summer and reminds Hoosiers to dial 9-1-1 in case of emergency. To learn more about water safety through the American Red Cross website.