Child drownings peak during summer - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

Child drownings peak during summer

YMCA sports park pool YMCA sports park pool
YMCA aquatics director Jeff DeMott YMCA aquatics director Jeff DeMott
YMCA member and mother Lynn Pflepsen YMCA member and mother Lynn Pflepsen
ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Summer heat can bring summer treats, at least for a few kids at the Albany YMCA pool. But all that fun could come to a screeching halt if your little one can't swim or lacks supervision.

In the last week there have been three cases related to children drowning, all under the age of 10, one of the most vulnerable groups.

"The child has a very short period of generally a quiet struggle and then they will slip under the water," YMCA aquatics director Jeff DeMott said. 

"We live on the river here, so there's a huge chance for kids here to drown and the rapids right there near the playground," Mother and YMCA member Lynn Pflepsen said.

Pflepsen put her kids through swimming lessons as soon as they were able to lift their heads up.

"Less than a year old they were in the water," Pflepsen said. 

DeMott says that's what parents should do because its not just about learning to swim but how to be safe near water at an early age to instill good habits.

"We live in a society where there's enough access and opportunity for aquatic environment that its something that's essential," DeMott said.  

He recommends fencing off pools when they're not in use and to clear the deck of toys that children might be tempted to grab. 

Pflepsen feels even with a life jacket its a skill kids should develop.

"They'll be able to kick enough, that they'll not be scared of the water and be in control to easily be rescued," Plfepsen continues. 

According to the CDC, every day two children aged 14 and under will die from drowning making it the second leading cause of unintentional injury. A problem DeMott says can be prevented by keeping eyes on our youngsters so they can continue to make a splash. 

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