Southern Arizona drownings drop before busy summer season - Tucson News Now

Southern Arizona drownings drop before busy summer season

. - Memorial Day weekend marks the start of summer for many folks, and that means more time cooling off in the water.
As of the Sunday before Memorial Day, emergency crews have responded to four water-related incidents in Pima County in 2015. That number is lower than usual for this time of year, according to Tracey Koslowski with Drexel Heights Fire District and Drowning Prevention Coalition of Arizona.
“It's four too many,” she said. “However we've seen other years where it's been double that at this point in time, so actually we're excited that the numbers are low.”
The numbers are lower in the Phoenix Area as well. The DPCA reports six deadly water incidents for Maricopa this year compared to 12 deaths during the same time frame in 2014.
Cooler temperatures this spring are part of the reason, according to Koslowski. But as we move closer to 100 degree days, she warns that now is the time to prepare your pool and your loved ones.
“The incidents are 100% preventable,” Koslowski said. “As a first responder, it breaks our hearts for these families.”
What stands out to Koslowski about Pima County's four incidents is that none of them happened in a backyard or apartment complex. She said those types of familiar pools are where most of the incidents typically happen.
Instead, the four took place in a bathtub, a resort, a canal and an aquatic center. Two involved children under the age of 5, one was a teenage pulled from a canal after her car rolled over and the fourth was a man who is believed to have had a heart attack in the water. He did not survive, according to the info filed with the DPCA.
Koslowski and the DPCA stress that in order to keep reports low and everyone safe, families should follow the ABC's of drowning prevention: always have an adult designated to watch the water if children are around, place barriers like a locked gate or fence around your pool to stop anyone from wandering into the water without supervision, and make sure someone at the pool knows CPR in order to increase everyone's chance of survival in case there is a drowning.

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