It’s officially the first day of summer! Today, June 21st, marks the summer solstice of 2018. For those of us living in Earth’s Northern Hemisphere, this is officially the longest day of the year.
In today’s post, we’ll learn a bit about this annual cosmic event. After that, to kick off the summer, we’ll share some of our favorite tips for staying safer by the water.
What Exactly is the Summer Solstice?
Let’s start with a bit of simple science. The earth doesn’t stand straight up on its axis. It’s actually slightly tilted as it orbits around the sun. Because of this tilt, certain spots on the planet receive more sunlight at given times during the year. When an area is hit with less sunlight, it becomes colder. When struck more directly, it warms up. In short, this is why we have the seasons of winter, spring, summer and autumn.
The summer solstice represents the exact moment when the North Pole is angled closest to the sun. Contrary to popular belief, we aren’t actually closer to the sun during this time. In fact, it’s quite the opposite situation. During the summer, the Earth is actually furthest from the sun. It’s the angle of our axis that makes the difference.
The summer solstice marks the official start of the summer season. Today will be the longest day and the shortest night of the year for 88 percent of the globe. If you’d like to learn more about this phenomenon, here’s an excellent article that explains it on Space.com.
Staying Safer This Season
Throwing a Pool Party? Lay Down Some Ground Rules
Now that it’s officially summer, it’s pool party season. These parties are tons of fun. That said, they can be very dangerous. Before letting the kids hop into the pool, it’s important to set some ground rules. Discussing these rules beforehand will help keep any children be aware of possible dangers. In turn, this makes them little bit safer.
Here are some rules that we recommend:
- No running.
- No splashing (children can choke when water is splashed in their face).
- Use the bathroom, not the pool.
- No rough play.
- Stay away from the pool drain.
- No diving or jumping into the pool.
- No dunking.
Give Kids Your Full Attention
At Life Saver Pool Fence, we’re very concerned with the safety of children. Therefore, it is important to keep a close eye on any child in the water. Beware a false sense of security. Active supervision is key. This means paying close attention to each child without succumbing to distraction. No matter the circumstances, keeping a close eye on these children should be the supervisor’s priority.
An Active Supervisor Must:
- Stay off their phone.
- Be a strong swimmer.
- Not drink alcohol.
- Be close to the pool.
- Limit conversations with other guests to avoid distraction.
- Enforce the pool rules.
- Watch all children diligently.
- Be ready to enter the pool at any time.
- For children aged 0-5, the active supervisor needs to be in the pool with the children and remain within arms reach at all times.
Active supervision is a big responsibility. That said, it’s important to take turns. After all, no adult wants to be stuck on lifeguard duty all party long! Instead, parents should take turns as the official active supervisor.
To help, we recommend assigning supervisors to work in 15-to-20-minute intervals. This way, everyone will stay safe and everyone has the chance to have fun!
Know How To Recognize the Signs of Drowning
Water safety is a strong responsibility for all parents. Therefore, it is important that all adults are aware of any potential or even unlikely drowning hazards. After all, drowning often happens faster than most people think. It is also remarkably quiet. The truth is, when someone is in danger, they won’t necessarily call out for help. Instead, they’ll often quietly (and quickly) slip beneath the waves. For this reason, we all should learn to recognize when a person is drowning or struggling in the water.
CPR is a Life Saver
More than anything else, CPR can help you save a life. Before the summer season, everyone should become certified in CPR. Or, make sure that at least one of your guests is certified (the more the better) if you’re planning to host a party. For more information on becoming certified in CPR, we’ve written an entire article about the subject. Being trained in CPR can significantly increase the chances of survival for a victim.
There are plenty more tips for staying safer near the water this summer. Take a look around the blog and don’t be afraid to reach out to us on Facebook or Instagram. In the end, we’re all working towards the same goal: a safe and happy summer! Happy Summer Solstice!