Water Safety For Children

A child can drown in less than 5cm of water, which is a sobering thought. This guide to water safety outlines areas for parents and guardians to be aware of.

Look out for the ASA's Get Safe campaign, or brush up on your water safety skills with the ASA's interactive guide here. It's not only in swimming pools and at the seaside that you need to keep an eye on your kids.

Water is everywhere. In your home and in your garden as well as in the wider world.

It's important that parents remain vigilant around all forms of water. So here are some tips to help you keep your children safe around water.

In the home

  • Stay in an arm's reach of your child in the bath.
  • Watch your child if using a bath ring or seat. They are not replacements for adult supervision.
  • Keep bathroom doors closed or use a child door lock.
  • Keep toilet lid down or use a lid latch.

In the garden

  • If you have a swimming pool in your garden, make sure it’s surrounded by a fence with a locked gate.
  • Never let your children play in the pool unattended.
  • Keep toys away from the pool when it is not in use.
  • Don't use electrical applicances near the pool.
  • Ensure NO DIVING if the pool is not deep enough.
  • If you have a pond, it should be covered with a rigid grill or mesh.

In open water

  • Ensure your child understands the dangers of swimming in open water. Find the Under-16s guide to swimming in open water here.
  • Make sure your child wears a life jacket on boating trips.
  • Your child could quickly and easily be blown out to sea on a large inflatable toy – try to discourage their use.
  • Make sure your child never swims out of his or her depth.
  • Water wings, inflatable toys, rafts and air mattresses should never be used as life jackets and life preservers.

Water safety courses

  • Teach your child water safety rules. Get started here.
  • Consider enrolling yourself on a first aid course.
  • Book your child on to swimming and water safety lessons. Find more information here.
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