Onus on parents to watch


CJ Smith with her children James (9), Annabelle (10) and Elijah (7) enjoy a swim at Cannington Leisureplex.
CJ Smith with her children James (9), Annabelle (10) and Elijah (7) enjoy a swim at Cannington Leisureplex.

A Noranda toddler suffered serious brain damage after he was pulled from a portable backyard pool on December 22, and on November 11, a two-year-old died after he was found floating in the backyard pool of a family day care centre in Carramar.

Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death in children under five years of age, while almost half of all injuries recorded at public swimming pools involve children.

To prevent any further drowning this summer the City of Canning is urging parents to keep a close eye on children whenever they are around pools.

The City’s two leisureplex centres in Riverton and Cannington are promoting the Watch Around Water program, developed by the Royal Lifesaving Society to address the growing concerns regarding supervision of young children around water.

Watch Around Water started in WA in 2004, following a spate of drowning deaths involving young children at public swimming pools.

It aims to educate parents about the importance of keeping a close eye on their children at all times while they are at aquatic facilities or around water, and not to rely solely on lifeguards.

City of Canning chief executive Lyn Russell said the City wanted to ensure the community it could safely enjoy its aquatic facilities.

“We want to remind the community that while there are lifeguards at the facilities, parents and carers need to take the primary role of keeping their children safe when in the water,” she said.

Children under six years of age must be accompanied into the centre by a responsible adult and supervised within arm’s reach at all times at both of the City’s leisureplexes.

Children under 12 years of age must also be accompanied into the centre by an adult and be in sight at all times.

For further information or water safety tips visit www.watcharoundwater.org.au ,