You’ve probably heard it all your life: “Wear your life jacket, wear your life jacket.” And you undoubtedly did as a child any time you and your family were swimming or boating in a lake or the ocean or canoeing, kayaking or paddle boarding in a river or lake. Your parents insisted on it. But have you continued the practice as an adult? You should.
The importance of wearing a life jacket any time you and your family are near, on, or in water cannot be overstated. Life jackets are designed to save lives, but they can’t do so if people don’t wear them.
Sobering US drowning statistics include the following:
Life jackets come in the following three basic types:
Life jackets also come in four basic sizes: adult, youth, child, and infant.
When buying a life jacket, make sure you choose one with a label saying it’s US Coast Guard-approved. Then try it on. It should fit comfortably but snugly. Test the fit by fastening and securing all its straps and then raising your arms above your head. The life jacket should stay in place and not ride up. Finally, ask someone to lift the jacket at your shoulders. It should never rise above your ears. This procedure should be followed with every individual, child or adult, buying a life jacket.
Not all swimmers are created equal. You need to be well aware of your own swimming abilities and those of your children. Also, keep in mind that swimming in a pool is considerably different than swimming in an open body of water. For one thing, the water in a lake, river, or ocean likely will be colder than in pool water. In addition, the footing probably will be less stable, containing rocks, pebbles, and possibly sudden unseen drop-offs that can put someone in over their head in an instant. The other important thing to remember is that there may be a strong current or undertow that can get swimmers trapped before realizing it. These are all important reasons why all swimmers, novices, and strong swimmers alike, should recognize the importance of wearing a life jacket.
Make sure that you and your entire family know how to float, tread water and swim for at least 7-10 feet while face down in the water before heading out for a day of water fun. Also, make sure that you and all other adults know how to perform CPR. These safety measures could save a life.
If the unthinkable happens and you or one of your family members suffers a water-related injury, call the experienced personal injury lawyers at Giroux Trial Attorneys. We care about you and your family, and we can help.Share this Article