NMC Employee Wellness Monthly Mini Challenge
Wellness Works! - National water safety Month
The dog days of summer are here and tourists and locals are flocking the beaches of northern Michigan for relief. Keep your day at the beach safe by being aware of your surroundings and taking precautions to avoid potential hazards. Swimming in a lake or river is different than swimming in a pool. Natural bodies of water are usually cold with currents, waves and debris, both on and off shore. Therefore, it requires more skill and energy to maneuver through the water effectively. Here are a few things to keep in mind before you jump in the water:
• Be aware of fast moving currents, waves or rapids.
• Look for tripping or tangling hazards like rocks, vegetation or aquatic life.
• Make note of sudden drop-offs that change water depth.
• Keep an eye out for sudden weather changes.
• Stay in the designated swim area and never venture out in the boating section.
Practice water safety by making sure everyone in your group learns how to swim. If you have young children or weak swimmers have them wear a life jacket when they are around water. Choosing a life jacket is easy if you follow with these tips:
• Make sure the jacket is the correct type for the designated activity.
• Make sure the jacket has a U.S. Coast Guard approval stamp.
• Make sure it fits the user comfortably and check the label for weight limits.
• Make sure the buckles and straps work properly.
• Make sure the user can swim while wearing the jacket.
WARNING: Water wings, swim rings, inflatable toys and other items designed for water recreation are not substitutes for U.S. Coast Guard approved life jackets or adult supervision.
If someone is in trouble in the water call for help. Throw the victim something that will provide support until help arrives. Common beach objects like a foam cooler or inner tube will work. Ideally a floating object with a rope attached is best to pull the person to safety. Do not enter the water if currents or waves make wading difficult. If the water is calm you can put on a life jacket and wade into the water extending a pole, branch or life jacket to the victim. Here are more water safety tips:
Information in this article was compiled from the American Red Cross Water Safety website. For more information visit http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster/water-safety