Nicole Hughes has a crucial message for parents and other adults: Don’t assume children are being supervised and kept safe from hazards just because there’s a lot of people around.
Hughes’ 3-year-old son drowned in a swimming pool after slipping out of a roomful of a dozen adults, half of whom were physicians.
“Without realizing it, subconsciously you’re letting your guard down when there’s a bunch of people around,” says Hughes, who now works with the American Academy of Pediatrics on water safety, in a New York Times article. “When ‘everybody’s watching the kid, then nobody’s watching.”
Her advice pertains not only to drowning prevention but to other summer injury hazards such as keeping children at least 3 feet away from grills and campfires.
Adults also need to remember that drowning remains a risk as children get older. Supervision is still essential, and no one should swim alone.
Check out more tips for safe swimming.