Thanks to An Apple Per Day‘s Kaitlin Gardner for this guest post on pool safety.  So timely given the summer heat and pool season…

Have the pool inspected. Have a professional check out the pool equipment, to make sure it’s all in proper working order. Verify there are no exposed wires in the electrical wiring and outlets. Make sure the decking doesn’t have chipped tiles that could stub a young toe. Does the pump system have a safety vacuum release system? This makes the pump system shut down if there is a blockage on the drain. Here are some resources I found that gave more details:

Install a fence. Make sure it is at least 4 feet high, with a gate and locking mechanism.

Secure pool chemicals. For example, a shed behind it with a lock on it can be used to store pool chemicals. Make sure chemicals aren’t accessible by the children.

Establish pool rules. Discuss safety rules for kids such as only swimming when an adult is supervising, “no running,” and continue to reinforce and even post the rules where kids will see them.

A set of rules for Mom and Dad. The most important rule – no unsupervised swimming – means that kids aren’t allowed to swim unless their parents are with them. But that doesn’t mean a parent is in the backyard, texting friends while the kids are swimming. When an adult is supervising, that should be the only focus. It doesn’t take long for a child to gulp some water, get into a panic, and find themselves in trouble. Take CPR lessons, in case of an emergency.

Swimming lessons for the kids. Research shows that children greatly reduce their chances of drowning, if they have had formal swimming lessons, which can start around age 4.

Kaitlin Gardner started to further her passion for a family friendly, green living lifestyle. She just started her first book about living an eco-friendly, healthy, natural lifestyle.