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Tue, June 02

Drownings can happen in seconds, police warn

Fun at the local pool - or even in your backyard - can come to a quick halt in seconds. The Chino Valley Aquatic Center, pictured here, has lifeguards to keep watch over the pool. (Jason Wheeler/Prescott News Network, file)

Fun at the local pool - or even in your backyard - can come to a quick halt in seconds. The Chino Valley Aquatic Center, pictured here, has lifeguards to keep watch over the pool. (Jason Wheeler/Prescott News Network, file)

As residents and visitors flock to backyard and area pools and lakes for the Memorial Day weekend, law enforcement authorities are warning that drownings can happen in seconds.

Also, Prescott Valley Police stated in a news release: “Know what to do in an emergency. If a child is missing, check the water first. Seconds count in preventing death or disability.”

From 2005-2014, there were an average of 3,536 drowning incidents (non-boating related) annually in the United States - about 10 deaths per day, police said. One in five people who die from drowning are children 14 and younger.

And, for every child who dies from drowning, another five receive emergency department care for nonfatal submersion injuries.

Finally, police said, the younger the child, the greater the risk.

“The Prescott Valley Police Department encourages you to follow these safety tips whenever you are in, on or around water,” said Jodi Mullins, community service officer with the PVPD.

MAKE WATER SAFETY YOUR PRIORITY

• Never leave a young child unattended near water and do not trust a child’s life to another child; teach children to always ask permission to go near water.

• Ensure that pool barriers enclose the entire pool area, are at least 5-feet high with gates that are self-closing, self-latching and open outward, and away from the pool. The latch should be at least 54 inches above the ground.

• If you have an above-ground or inflatable pool, remove access ladders and secure the safety cover whenever the pool is not in use.

• Remove any structures that provide access to the pool, such as outdoor furniture, climbable trees, decorative walls and playground equipment.

• Keep toys that are not in use away from the pool and out of sight. Toys can attract young children to the pool.

• Stay within arm’s reach of young children and avoid distractions when supervising children around water.

For more information on Swimming Pool Safety, see Prescott Valley Town Code 13-21-100 on the Town Web Site at http://pvaz.net.

“Every pool, every lake and every warm summer day holds the possibility of new, fun summer experiences. All you need to add is your undivided attention,” the news release states. “Have a great summer! You are encouraged to report any violations to the police department.”

Prescott Valley Police Department can be contacted at 928-772-9267 for non-emergencies, 911 for emergencies. As always, if you see something, say something!

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