Kristi's Kids

Jul 4, 2013 8:35 PM by Nikai Salcido

Pool safety for 4th of July weekend

TUCSON - People are plunging into swimming pools all over Southern Arizona at holiday pool parties this weekend.

Just about every holiday weekend there is a drowning or near drowning at a backyard gathering.

So far this year in Pima County, one child has died at such an event.

Eight kids have nearly drowned in a variety of accidents.

Kristi's Kids caught-up with the Wilson family to see how they keep everyone safe.

The Wilsons have three kids. There is Carson, 6, Morgan is 4 and Griffin is just 19 months old. Baby number four is on the way.

But often they have many more enjoying their pool.

"There's about 11 kids here now," says Nathan Wilson.

At a recent birthday splash they were even more.

"We had about, I want to say, at least 20 kids in there at that time and a mixture of maybe up to 10 adults."

The Wilsons don't wait for swim time to emphasize safety.

"We always make sure in our invite that we say, if your child is going to be swimming, there needs to be an adult in the pool with them at all times," says Kristen Wilson.

Adult supervision is supreme but that takes good communication. Sometimes, a parent needs to step away for a minute.

Nathan explains, "They will turn directly to the other parent. Talk to them in the eye and say, ‘Hey I'm leaving. Can you watch my daughter for 5 minutes? And I will be right back.' So we will communicate directly with one another, make sure there is no confusion."

Another common mistake at a large gathering is propping the pool gate open.
With so many kiddos coming and going and adults with their hands full, it can be tempting.

Not at the Wilson's home. "We keep that locked at all times," says Kristen.

Also, adults have to be proactive. Water Watchers need to look for tired swimmers.

"You can see them struggling to get to the side or you can see them just getting lazy," Kristen explains. "We have them just take time out. Go sit on your towel for awhile or go get a snack. Or take a rest or stuff like that."

And when swim time is over, make sure all the toys are out of the pool and stowed away. You don't want any temptations left floating in the pool area.

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