Swim safe this summer


Summer is one of the best times of year to jump in the pool or head to the beach but some of the everyday products used to make this time enjoyable can be hazardous especially for children Minister for Small Business Michael McCormack says.

"With Christmas and school holidays just around the corner it is fair to say many Aussie kids will spend time in the water but some of the popular everyday flotation aids used can be deadly," Mr McCormack said.

"Popular flotation aids including armbands, attached rings and swimming aid vests should be treated with caution, they are not safety devices and if children are using them they should have constant adult supervision.

"Children who cannot swim can drown if their aid fails or if they are using it unsupervised.

"I strongly urge all parents and carers of children to follow the manufacturer's age and/or weight recommendations when choosing a flotation device and make sure you read the warning labels and packaging carefully and always follow the safety instructions provided."

Mr McCormack said last year swimming pools including portable pools accounted for 45 per cent of all drowning deaths in young children.

"Not everyone has a backyard pool and will purchase the next best alternative – a portable pool, however it is important to know there are hazards with these types of products and they can pose serious drowning risks to young children regardless of the pool's size," Mr McCormack said.

"If you are thinking about keeping the kids cool in a portable pool make sure you empty it and store it after use. Children can drown in the smallest amount of water.

"If you are not 100 per cent sure about the product you have purchased or if you need further product safety advice jump online and visit the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's Product Safety website."

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