– Yvonne Yorke –
Swimming is to the Canadian summer what skating is to the Canadian winter. It doesn’t matter if you are in a lake or a pool, nothing beats the cool water temperatures on a hot summer day. To ensure that swimming remains cool and refreshing, please keep these water safety tips in mind this summer:
- Use waterproof sunscreen or UV resistant clothing if you will be in or on the water. The sun’s rays are more intense near water due to its reflection off the water. Remember to reapply sunscreen.
- Learn to swim regardless of your age.
- If you are at a public pool or beach, look for and read the signs. Follow the safety instructions. Is there a lifeguard on duty? Is the area supervised or unsupervised?
- Regardless of your swimming skill level, wear a life jacket. While this is a best practice at beaches, docks or in lakes, wearing a life jacket in a pool is also beneficial – especially for children.
- Life jackets and personal flotation devices are not suitable replacements for proper supervision. Always have a “Water Watcher.” This is a dedicated person to watch the water and swimmers for signs of distress. Avoid distractions or alcohol if you are the designated Water Watcher. Keep young children and weak swimmers close by.
- Use the buddy system. Never swim alone.
- Walk, do not run around water.
- Be careful getting in and out of the water.
- Look before you leap! No dives or cannon balls into shallow water.
- Do not swim if there is a storm or lightning.
While the opening date of the Wellesley Community Center Pool is yet to be announced, the City of Toronto has 58 outdoor pools, 10 beaches and a water park. After a winter of isolation, let’s get out and have fun in the sun!
Source: Laura Theo, former lifeguard & CityofToronto.ca