Safety - in and around water - Better Lives Healthy Futures

Safety – in and around water

Age group:
Age group:
It’s important to keep children safe around water whether in the home, garden or beyond

Sadly, each year in the UK 40-50 children lose their lives due to drowning and water related injuries – most of which are preventable. These tips will help you keep your children safe in the bath, pool, or outdoors where there’s water.

Top tips for safety in and around water

Supervise children at all times when they are in or around a water source.

Think about water safety in the home – children can drown rapidly and in small volumes of water – always supervise at bath time and be aware it’s easy to get distracted.

Ensure paddling pools are always emptied when not in use, or securely covered over.

Make your pond safe – use a rigid metal grille across it, fence it off or fill it in

Consider teaching your child to swimget details about public swimming baths, including swimming lessons.

Be extra vigilant on holiday – beach and pool conditions and safety standards vary considerably throughout the world.

Learn about rip currents – these strong currents are a major cause of drowning at UK beaches, read the further information section below for advice from lifesaving experts.

Be informed about the dangers of children playing and swimming in rivers, lakes and reservoirs – especially in the long, hot summer school holidays – cold water temperatures can kill by inducing a rapid and dangerous hypothermia (very low temperature) to the body

Only use inflatables at the swimming pool – in the sea strong currents or winds can rapidly sweep them out to sea.

Lake, pond and river ice is dangerous – children and adults can fall through and drown – teach your children to stay off ice except at the skating rink.

blue-bird green-bird orange-bird pink-bird

Further information

Developing children's water safety knowledge, skills, attitude and behaviours

A range of free and paid for advice and downloads for parents and carers from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, including flags and water safety signs and rescue methods.

Open water and general water safety advice

Stay safe in open water - water safety advice from the Royal Life Saving Society UK - helpful leaflets and videos.

What is a rip current?

Rips are strong currents running out to sea which can quickly drag you from the shallows of the shoreline - find out how to stay safe - advice from the RNLI.

Understanding rip currents

Rip currents cause drowning through panic and fatigue. Important facts about rip currents from the Met Office to help you stay safe at the seaside.