Here are some things you can do to be safe around the water

Make sure your child’s life jacket fits correctly – In this fun video, learn how to properly fit a life jacket on a child and how one should fit for adults. Nationwide, 85-90% of recreational boating fatalities involve people who were not wearing a life jacket. In Oregon, our waterways are always cold. Most people succumb to cold water incapacitation/shock if they fall into the water unexpectedly and experience a gasp reflex. This leads to taking water into the lungs and eventual drowning in many cases. A life jacket will help keep your head above the water, greatly improving survivability.

Wear Your Life Jacket – Boaters enjoy the feel of sun and spray. So it’s tempting to boat without wearing a life jacket especially on nice days. But modern life jackets are available in a wide variety of shapes, colors, and sizes. Many are thin and flexible. Some are built right into fishing vests or hunter coats. Others are inflatable as compact as a scarf or fanny pack until they hit water, when they automatically fill with air. Here is how to choose the right life jacket.

Take Steps to Stay Safe Around Water – Swimming is the most popular summer activity. The best thing you can do to help your family stay safe is to enroll in age-appropriate swim lessons. Contact the Training Support Center at 1-800-RED-CROSS or support@redcrosstraining.org. Follow these water safety tips whenever you are in, on or around water.

Watch The Safer Paddling Series – Canoe & Kayak has partnered with the United States Coast Guard and major paddlesports brands to bring you this 8-part video series featuring ACA-certified instructors Kate Ross Kuthe and Paul Kuthe. Watch them all as Paul and Kate share safety, technique and gear tips, plus their paddling philosophy – be safe, be smart, have fun.