Safety Tips for Summer Water Fun July 23 2013

The hot temperatures and sunshine make everyone want to grab a towel and head to the nearest body of water. Whether it’s swimming, river kayaking, canoeing, or relaxing on a boat, taking advantage of the outdoors on the water makes for great summer memories. Even more importantly, following water safety tips ensures water fun keeps everyone out of danger.

New to the Water?

Knowing how to swim when participating in water activities is practical. For those who can’t swim, wearing a personal flotation device gives folks the opportunity to participate with confidence. Make sure a seasoned swimmer is with you at all times and stay close to areas where lifeguards on duty.

Read the Signs

Follow all posted warnings about tide conditions, shark sightings and high water levels when appreciating water activities. Even if you have been on the water numerous times, remember that nature is stronger than you.

Troubled Water

Know the weather conditions anticipate for that day and the condition of the current. At the first sign of turbulent weather, stop swimming or watercrafting and get to shore.  Water and lightning do not mix well, causing abruptly changing tides, extreme waves and strong currents. Rough waters cause watercrafts to capsize.

The Right Equipment

If you are using a watercraft, double-check all equipment to ensure it is in proper working condition before you embark on your voyage. Inflatable equipment should be without rips or holes. Pack a patch kit, a first aid kit and an emergency kit with flares. All recreational watercrafts are required to have one life jacket per person including canoes and kayaks. For more information on life jacket standards, visit www.uscgboating.org. As lifejacket regulations vary from state to state, be sure to know requirements in advance.

Plan you travel

Plan out the path you will travel. Keeping a portable navigation system with you in a water resistant T-REIGN ProCase will keep you on course and get you back safely from your water adventure. It is also wise to let someone who won’t be on the water with you know your course; search parties or rescue teams will have a starting point if you run into trouble.

Feet-First Diving

If you are swimming, implement a feet-first entry into the water. You don’t want to incur a serious injury from diving head first without knowing what lies beneath the water’s surface. Designated diving and swimming areas are the safest places to dive.

Under the Sea

Swimmers should also be cautious of aquatic life. Not everything that lives in water is friendly. As pretty as they may be, don’t engage fish swimming near you. Also, avoid swimming around plant life as some species of plants are dangerous and are prone to entangle swimmers.

Foot Protection

Wearing shoes in water may seem silly, but water shoes protect feet from coral, jellyfish and sharp objects. I learned about water shoes after I cut my toe on a sharp rock at a river and had to have stitches. My fun water day turned into a not-so-fun trip to the emergency room. By investing in sturdy (and hopefully stylish) water shoes, you will avoid a similar situation.

Water activities are a cool way to break the heat of summer while enjoying the outdoors. Prevent accidents by observing a few safety methods. Learn more about water safety with The Red Cross. T-REIGN wants you to have a brilliant and safe summer outdoors.