Be safe on the boat

HealthBeat

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Summer weather has many people in KELOLAND heading to the lake for some time on the water.

Boats can be seen on lakes all across KELOLAND as many people enjoy some fun in the sun.
But before you start making waves, Kathy Grady says to be sure everyone on board knows how to swim.

“If you are going to be around the water, I mean, you should definitely know how to swim,” Grady said.

Grady is the aquatic supervisor at the Sanford Wellness Center and says swimming lessons are offered at the facility for children beginning at six months of age.

“Kids can drown in like less than 10 seconds. I mean, it does not take long for them to all of a sudden be there, and then next thing you know, they’re gone. So you just gotta make sure you’re always aware of where your children are at and just be really smart around the water,” Grady said.

It’s not just kids she says should know how to swim, but adults too. In addition, she says to be sure to have a life jacket for each person on board.

“So I would say drowning accidents or, you know, where people have been submerged for a long time. That’s one of the biggest things that we worry about and why it is so important to always have your life jacket on,” Dr. Amanda Duxbury said.

Dr. Amanda Duxbury says her family goes boating often in the summer, sometimes even pulling a tube behind.

And when they do, she says a spotter is always necessary.

“You need to make sure that you have a spotter sitting up by the driver who’s watching just the tube, who, as soon as someone falls off, that they can, you know, notify them, pat their shoulder, so they stop and they get the flag up to let other boaters know that you’ve got people in the water,” Duxbury said.

A few extra steps, that can make a big difference in your day at the lake.

“So many people are actually spending time at the lakes nowadays, so just be safe out there,” Grady said.

For more tips on boat safety, click here.

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