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Drowning Prevention

Drowning is the leading cause of death in children ages 1 to 14 due to unintentional injury. The peak age for these drowning deaths is 2- and 3-years-old, with most of these incidents occurring in residential pools, bathtubs and buckets.

Get Water Smart! Challenge Quiz — Take the quiz to get Water Smart!

Take the Pool Safety Pledge — include the entire family and share the message with everyone.


Drowning Prevention Task Force

Safe Kids San Diego has a Drowning Prevention Task Force that is very active. Every year, the group supports San Diego City Parks and Recreation’s, Summer Safety Splash. These FREE events showcase all aspects of water safety and provide families with hands-on experience in CPR, simple rescues, free swim lessons and the use of Water Watcher Tags (see below).

Video: Water Safety Tips for Drowning Prevention

Water Watcher Tags

Water Watcher Tags, which were developed and are distributed by the task force, lists various ways adults can protect children when near or in the water. These tags are to be given to a responsible adult who can adhere to the responsibilities below:

  • Keeping a constant eye on children in and near water.Water Watcher tag 2
  • Staying within an arm’s reach of children in the water.
  • Avoiding distractions, including socializing and texting on the phone.
  • Avoiding drinking alcohol before or during Water Watcher time.
  • Having a cell phone on hand and calling 911 if needed.
  • Starting CPR if needed.

Water Watcher Tags are FREE and can be found at recreation centers, fire stations and YMCAs.

See why having a Water Watcher to constantly watch the kids is so important. Check out the video below.

Video: No One is Watching

Water Safety Resources

Click here for our Water Safety Fact Sheet.

Click here for a list of recreation centers offering free or reduced-cost swim lessons.

Click here for a list of local authorized providers of the American Red Cross Learn-to-Swim program.

Click here to find centers offering CPR classes.

Click here for drowning prevention resources.


Drowning Prevention

Want the Safe Kids Drowning Prevention Task Force to bring an educational presentation to your group? See the course offerings below.

Start Safe: Water
Safe Kids Worldwide partnered with Young Minds Inspired, the National Head Start Association, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and water safety experts to create Start Safe: Water, a free educational program designed to teach children ages 2 to 4 and their families about water safety. The program emphasizes three key messages associated with using layers of protection in and around water – Lock, Look, Learn. Safety messages are delivered to children using age-specific curriculum and activities. While children are enjoying their water safety class, parents learn valuable information in developing multiple layers of protection including effective adult supervision, physical barriers and emergency response.

Audience: Children ages 2-4, parents

Class size: Children 5-10, adults 5-20

Duration: 1 hour

Visit for more information.

To schedule a presentation, contact Safe Kids San Diego at 858-576-1700, ext. 243547

The Safer 3, A Water Safety Program
The Safer 3 water safety program is based on the premise that no one is safe from drowning, but we can make it SAFER by focusing on three key concepts: safer water, safer kids and safer response.  Safer water means knowing there are risks with any body of water (bathtubs, spas, lakes, pools, oceans). Safer kids means that parents should be in constant arms-reach supervision and that the entire family should learn how to swim. Safer response means that families should have emergency plans in place, such as cell phones near the pool, skills in CPR, and first aid. This program uses child-friendly icons and activity books to engage children and reinforce these concepts.

Audience: Pre-school to grade 6; parents
Duration: 1 hour
Class size: Children, six-20; parents, six-30
Visit for more information.

In the News

*the Safe Kids Water Safety task force wishes to acknowledge that the terminology for drowning event is “fatal” or “nonfatal. The term “near drownings is no longer used in the Water Safety Community.