More Children Are Drowning In Pools And Spas, Says The CPSC

Here’s some bleak news, more children are drowning in pools and spas lately, says the CPSC. The increase in deaths is probably due to a increase in the number of pools and spas in the U.S., but Consumer Reports warns that some pools are more dangerous than others.

From the Wall Street Journal:

These pools, unlike in-ground models — which usually require a construction permit — are less likely to be subject to local safety codes that call for measures such as fencing, covers or alarms, advocates say. Inflatable pools can be quite large, accommodating several adults and, in many cases, accessible by a ladder.

Donald Mays, senior director of product safety and technical public policy at Consumers Union, a nonprofit consumer advocacy group, urges consumers not to buy such inflatable pools. He says that the sides are often pliable, making it easy for a child to topple in.

Mr. Mays also says that such pools’ covers are usually designed to keep out debris but cannot withstand the weight of a person. He mentioned an incident in which kids playing on a cover of one of these pools got entangled and drowned.

“The fact is that when people buy these very inexpensive pools at drugstores or the supermarket, towns are not aware they are being installed … and safety measures don’t get put in,” Mr. Mays says.

Here’s some more pool safety information from Consumer Reports. A particularly useful tip:

Since every second counts, always look for a missing child in the pool first. Precious time is often wasted looking for missing children anywhere but in the pool.

Child Drownings Rise, Spark Safety Concerns [WSJ]

Rise in child drownings prompts new warnings on pool safety [Consumer Reports]