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Inflatable pool safety

Inflatable pool safety

Young children at risk in inflatable pools

Royal Life Saving Australia are urging all parents and carers to be aware of the drowning risk portable swimming pools can pose to young children, as part of Kidsafe’s ‘Safe Barriers Save Lives’ campaign.

Portable pools (also known as inflatable pools or wading pools) are a popular choice for many families. They can however, pose a significant drowning risk to young children.

Royal Life Saving’s recently released National Drowning Report 2019 sadly showed 19 children aged 0-4 years lost their lives to drowning in the 2018/19 financial year, a 30% reduction on the ten year average.

But, swimming pools, including portable pools, are the leading location for drowning in this age group, accounting for 63% of all deaths in 2018/19.

Over the past 17 years, 19 children aged 0-4 years have drowned in portable pools around the country.

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In all instances, adult supervision had lapsed and the vast majority of portable pools were unfenced.

National Research Manager Alison Marnie says that children in that age group are at the highest risk.

"We know that children under the age of 5 are at the highest risk of drowning."

"They're active, they're mobile and they're really curious about water, but they're too young to understand that water could pose any sort of danger to them.

According to Royal Life Saving, many parents may not be aware of the legal requirement in most states and territories to fence a pool deeper than 30cm, which includes portable pools.

Ms. Marnie is asking parents to stay vigilant;

"So, the call is really out to parents in Swan Hill. You need to be supervising your children really closely around water, give them your full attention and stay within arms reach."

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