Too many toddler drownings have already made the news this year. With "layers of protection" in place, pool owners can ensure their yard is a safer oasis of family pleasure and relaxation.
Layers of protection , or multiple barriers between the home and the pool, are key to a safe pool season, according to the National Drowning Prevention Alliance and the CPSC's "Pool Safely" campaign. This concept recognizes that supervision alone is not sufficient to ensure a safe pool area.
Parents cannot watch their young children every second of every day. The caregiver can be distracted by answering the phone or door, performing household tasks or checking e-mail. Water is like a magnet to children; it only takes a few seconds for danger to strike. When a child is missing, always check the pool area first, every second counts. Barriers help buy you those few minutes needed to re-establish direct contact when it has been momentarily lost.
Drowning is the second-leading cause of injury-related death for children ages 1 to 4, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Studies have shown that for every child who drowns, three to eight additional children receive emergency care for non-fatal submersion injuries, which can cause brain damage and long-term disabilities.
Numerous studies have shown that an isolation fence that separates the home from the pool can prevent 50 to 90 percent of all toddler drownings. Property-line fencing will prevent the neighbors' children from accessing the pool, but only an isolation fence with a self-closing, self-latching gate in good working order will prevent children from getting into the water without your knowledge.
You can improve the safety and security of your pool or spa with isolation fencing equipped with self-closing hinges and self-latching gate latches by D&D Technologies. These products are available at retail under the Stanley and National Hardware brands.
Magnetically triggered MagnaLatch gate latches have been shown to offer safe, reliable operation. They incur no mechanical resistance to closure, latching even when locked in the open position. Pool gates must be self-closing, and D&D's TruClose hinges feature a tension-adjustable enclosed spring so gates need no hazardous external spring.
Rust-free gate hardware by D&D, packaged under the Stanley and National Hardware brands, is now available through select Lowe's stores or on-line at lowes.com, and through other hardware retailers.
Pool gates should be inspected frequently and adjusted for alignment and tension, ensuring they self-close and self-latch every time. With TruClose hinges, the tension can easily be adjusted after installation with a screwdriver.
Never prop a gate open for convenience. It's simply not worth the risk. An isolation fence should be the first line of defense, but other steps can provide additional layers of protection between your home and your pool, ensuring your family years of safer relaxation and enjoyment.