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1 Jul 2017
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Some Tips On Water Sport Safety

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Posted By Marguerite R.

There are a few crucial things to consider when being around the water, let's explore them.

Learn to swim

Swimming is such a natural action for humans that many babies are born with the ability to swim! If you don't already know how, take lessons! This should be common sense for any one that lives near the water, but I think everyone should know how to swim.

Never swim or dive anywhere except clearly marked areas with a lifeguard.
When a boat slides out into the lake on a sweltering summer day, a strong swimmer wearing easily dried clothes is heartily tempted to jump right in!

However, some lakes can be extremely deceiving, seeming bottomless, when in fact they are only 12 feet deep in the middle. Be extremely careful when diving or jumping into water. Although the bottom may not be visible, it also may not be very far away from the bottom of the boat. The best way to stay safe when swimming or diving is to go with a friend, using the buddy system, and swim or dive only in marked areas.

Always wear a lifejacket when in or around the water.

Even the strongest swimmers can get in bad situations and should wear a life vest when playing around the water. Although when conscious and calm they may be able to swim 5 miles, a person who is injured or upset may need the extra flotation to help them survive until help comes.

Be careful when entering or exiting the water from a boat.

When scuba diving, snorkeling, or water skiing, the sport often requires exiting or entering the boat from the stern. This can be an especially dangerous aspect of the sport. Be extremely careful of propeller blades, anchor ropes, fishing line, or any other items that might be beneath the water near the boat. Wait for your driver to come to a complete stop and shut off the motor before approaching the vehicle.

Learn CPR and First Aid.

It's always a good idea to know how to help in an emergency. Not only may you be able to rescue another from a tough situation; you may also learn important guidelines for a calm and efficient reaction to danger. Take CPR classes and First Aid, whenever you have the opportunity. Knowing a few simple and logical steps may save a life.

Know which local water animals may be dangerous.

When swimming in the ocean in particular, there are many creatures to look out for such as jellyfish, stingrays, and of course sharks. Use common sense and stay out of the water at dusk and dawn when predatory animals are feeding and stay away from schools of baitfish.

When diving or snorkeling, look- don't touch!

Many underwater accidents happen due to blind groping. Many divers or snorkelers use their hands while lurking through the depths, and mistakenly grab a poisonous animal. It is important to avoid touching the bottom when underwater for visibility reasons as well.

Take classes or go with a certified guide.

Whether you are white water rafting, swimming, or snorkeling it is important to prepare for the sport before diving in. Many sports require certification; and even if your chosen activity doesn't, it's still a good idea to find out more about safety before going.

Wear sunscreen!

The reflection of sunlight from water can be intense enough to cause nasty sunburns. Avoid painful sunburns and blisters by carrying a small bottle of waterproof sunblock, and protect eyes with sunglasses.

Go with a buddy!

Never surf, swim, dive, raft, fish, canoe, kayak, or Jet Ski alone. If a person is injured during their sport, having a buddy nearby can save a life. Find a friend who wants to play in the water as well, and work together to have a splashing safe summer!

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