Staying safe at the pool

ALBERT LEA, Minn. – It’s the season for swimming, but that means it’s also a season for water related injuries and accidents.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that every day in the U.S., approximately ten people die from unintentional drowning; of those ten individuals, two of them are children ages 14 and younger.

Local aquatic centers are asking parents to step up their surveillance of their kids and not rely as much on the lifeguards.

The dangers of drowning are very real, which is why the majority of public pools like the Albert Lea Aquatic Center have trained lifeguards ready to jump and save the day.

Pool manager Brody Sundblad says they have small saves on a daily basis, and often times, these rescues are because a child has drifted away from their parent and has become overwhelmed in the water.

While these accidents are nothing to be too concerned about, Sundblad says the growing concern lies in the parents that aren’t paying enough attention to their kids.

“There is definitely a disconnect” he explains, “and a gap that needs to be addressed. We’ve been working hard to make sure that that gets real clearly told to everybody, that they understand what to do.”

Most parents understand and appreciate the security the lifeguard’s offer, however Sundblad says many parents have started taking this sense of comfort for granted.

Sundblad says that while his guards are well-trained and ready to serve, parents who come to the pool need to make sure their kids are ready and able to swim.

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