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August 03, 2008

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David

I think pools give all parents concern. I recall my parents waiting until my younger brother was in the 4th or 5th grade before installing our pool and even then, it was in a partitioned area of the yard sectioned off by a large nine foot high steel gate that once resided in front of the vault at a bank. My father, being concerned about children climbing over the yard fence, even built a two foot extension onto the existing six foot high fence that was around the pool.

The CDC tracks deaths and causes broken down by numerous variables. For 2005, with respect to unintentional deaths for children 2-5, the following are some rates of death per 100,000 children:

Motor vehicle - 3.41
Drowning - 2.11
Residential fire - 1.17
Pedestrian - 1.17
Suffocation - 0.41
Natural/Environmental - 0.19
Falls - 0.16
Firearms - 0.14

3/4 of the drowning deaths occurred in residential settings.

Audrey

My sixteen month old has NO FEAR of the water and that actually worries me. It scares me that she will see a body of water, remember how much fun it is, and enter without even thinking about it. I was slightly reassured on Saturday when she wanted to stomp in a big puddle and looked around for me - and my hand - first. But, after I told her that she couldn't go in it, she was totally ready to enter, Mom or no Mom. We've done the YMCA swimming lessons, but truth be told, at her age, they aren't really lessons. We'll keep doing them because she loves the pool, but I will feel more comfortable when she's older and can actually learn some swimming skills.

And about that houseboat story: our friends took their two year old and four month old on a family vacation on a houseboat last year. Thank god, nothing awful happened, but I don't think I would have been able to enjoy myself AT ALL with kids that young on a houseboat!!

Christa

My 15-month-old cousin drowned in her grandmother's swimming pool on July 19th of this year. Totally traumatizing. I'm not a fan of the water myself and my own mother-in-law lives on a lake, where the pier and lake are about 25 feet out in her back yard. My 3 & 4 year old boys spend a lot of time there, and like your children, also adore the water, so obviously we are way over-protective of them, especially after the loss of little Maddie. So I HEAR YA loud and clear on this subject, sister! It's kind of like sticking an infant in a room with a rottweiler...anything can happen. I've worked in the emergency department at our local hospital now for about 7 years and you would be surprised at the circumstances that determines the fate of children. One can never be too cautious.

laura

okay so i also have this fear and my almost 3 year old girl has no fear which makes my anixety even WORSE, yet she can swim pretty well and has so many devices on i can not relax until we are done swimming. my 17 months on the other hand hates that water and secretly im kinda glad. at least i wont have 2 Evil Knievls on my hands. i will take snow anyday!

Jenna

Get Alex and Genoa swimming lessons! My friends kid is Evie and Alex's age and can already swim really well by himself - after just 4 weeks of lessons! Then you wouldnt have to worry. We joined the JCC and all the kids younger than Evie put us to shame because they are diving and swimming underwater and stuff. I feel so lame, so we are starting in the fall so I can relax in the water.

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