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Tucson mom continues mission to prevent drowning - KVOA | KVOA.com | Tucson, Arizona

Tucson mom continues mission to prevent drowning

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A drowning, or near-drowning, can happen at any time and to anyone. There's a Tucson mom who's made prevention her mission. It takes less than a minute for someone to drown, or nearly drown. In the blink of an eye, lives can, and do, change forever.

“It just bothers me every time I hear that someone else is getting hurt, and it's 100% preventable,” said Rose Bennett, whose son, Ethan, nearly drowned at a day-camp in 2009, when he was six-years old.  

“Unfortunately, there wasn't adequate adult supervision. There was nobody that was C.P.R. trained, and there was no emergency plan,” Rose told Kristi’s Kids.

Since that fateful day when he was nearly killed, Ethan has been confined to a wheelchair. Still, that fact hasn’t kept him out of pools. But, Rose knows that water safety starts at home.

“We're very cautious about having a gate around our pool. We have our whistles. We get C.P.R. certified, Rose told us.

Today, Rose and her family always know to follow the ABC’s of water safety: A – Active, adult supervision. B – Barriers, including pool fences with self-latching gates. C – Classes, including C.P.R. classes for adults and swim classes for kids. Otherwise, they know the silent killer can strike again.

“You think it's like the movies. You think you're going to hear this big splash, and you're going to turn, run and jump in, and save the day. Couple pumps on the chest and everything's back to normal. It's furthest from the truth,” Rose told Kristi’s Kids.

Rose also says it’s critical to make sure your child's water-watcher knows the drill, even if you think it's a safe swim location.

“Talk to them about what their plan is, worst case scenario. How they plan on keeping your child safe?” Rose said.

You should also pre-judge yourself, to make sure your child has the skills to stay alive.

“You can't assume that just because no one has drowned, that they know how to swim,” Rose told Kristi’s Kids.

Remember: water isn't the enemy. But, distractions, a lack of barriers, and insufficient training are. Be water-smart. It's up to you to be a “Lifesaver.”  

“Water is fun. We love the water. We love to swim. But, you just have to be safe,” Rose said.

Kristi's Kids is just getting started with this 8th annual Lifesaver campaign. Our first Swimfest at the Mulcahy YMCA near Kino Sports Complex is just three weeks away. We have nine events this year, and you can sign your child up right now.  

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