Fiction: Children are easy to supervise and I do not need to modify my strategies as they age.
Fact: Children develop quickly and at different stages their abilities can change quite rapidly. As children grow they become more mobile and like to explore. This may mean they begin climbing over barriers that are designed to keep them away from water.
Fiction: Children are at a lesser risk of drowning because of their small physical build.
Fact: Young children are at risk because of their physical build. They are ‘top heavy’ and more prone to falling into water due to a lack of balance.
Fiction: Children are aware of the dangers water poses to them and will take care around water.
Fact: Children do not understand or perceive the hazards that water presents to them. They have no real sense of danger and require a high level of supervision.
Fiction: Young children can be left in the supervision of older children.
Fact: Never leave children in the care of older children. Older children may not perceive the amount of danger a young child may be in and may confuse drowning for playing or lack the attention levels needed to supervise correctly.
Fiction: Water needs to be reasonably deep for children to drown in it.
Fact: Children only need a small amount of water to drown in. Water that is deep enough to cover their nose and mouth is enough for a child to drown in.
Fiction: I can leave my child alone in the pool for a few seconds/ minutes while I grab something I forgot, or to go to the toilet.
Fact: Drowning can occur in a matter of moments and you should never leave your child without active adult supervision. Ensure you have everything you need before entering the pool.
Fiction: Toddlers are naturally docile and do not like to explore around water.
Fact: Toddlers are a naturally inquisitive group and are attracted to water. Children under 5 years of age are especially at risk because of their natural curiosity about their environment.
Fiction: When children are drowning they will make a lot of noise and cry and call for help.
Fact: This is a common misconception, when children drown it is silent
Child drowning is preventable. Unfortunately there are a number of myths about children and water. The aim of this fact or fiction is to give parents the real information about child drowning in order for them to more effectively prevent it.
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