Just a few weeks ago, a 7-year-old boy from West Haven drowned in Cottonwood Heights, reminding us of the importance of practicing pool safety as we reach the peak of summer. Drowning is the most common cause of unintentional death for Utah children age 14 and under, according to the CDC. Practicing simple pool safety principles can help protect you from a potentially heartbreaking situation.

This summer, I hosted a pool safety party to remind parents of the importance of designating a “water watcher” to watch swimmers.

People are often shocked to hear that a child can drown in the time it takes to answer a phone, and even near drownings can cause irreversible injuries, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

These startling facts serve as a strong reminder to focus on the most important task at hand: watching children around water. In our increasingly connected world, it can be tough to stay distraction-free around the pool. But the risky reality should keep us on high alert at all times.

As parents and Utah residents we need to be on guard when it comes to keeping our kids safe around water.

Chuck Eagleston

West Haven