Signs That Save July: Questions about Pool Safety with Jennifer Sandberg

About Swim Instructor Jennifer Sandberg: I have been blessed to be a Certified Infant Swimming Resource (ISR) instructor for almost 10 years in Central Florida. It brings me great joy to teach little ones survival swim lessons and help them become aquatic problem solvers. _________________________________________________________  


1: What is the number one thing parents should remember this summer and year-round in terms of pool and water safety?


The number one thing to remember when in or around water is to always have someone as a designated “water watcher” to keep their eyes constantly on children or anyone in the water.  


2: Are there any pool toys you feel we should avoid or be cautious to use this summer or in general?


Please avoid using flotation devices! Flotation devices create a sense of false security. The child jumps in, does nothing, and stays afloat. Later, children reach the water alone without flotation devices and jump in thinking they will be able to swim or stay afloat.  


3: Any advice for parents or caregivers on safeguards to protect loved ones from drowning?


There should be many layers of protection around your home if you have a pool, hot tub or live on the water. Fences, pool gates, alarms and locks on all doors and fences, and ISR survival swim lessons. Every child needs to learn how to swim and float. Over the years, I have personally had many students go through some of the barriers their parents set up and make it to the water alone. Thankfully, they learned how to be an aquatic problem solver and they used their skills to swim to the side or rollback to afloat.


4: Is there anything else you wish to share with parents about creating a safe pool environment that wasn’t covered above?


  • Constant eyes on! If the person who is watching others swim has to go inside, designate another adult.
  • Check your locks and layers of protection daily. Don’t assume the pool or lawn person, nanny, or anyone else may have locked up.
  • If you call for your child in your home and they don’t answer, go to the pool area first!
  • When heading to the beach, take a picture of your child (on your phone) in their swim shirt/bathing suits. In the case of an emergency, it may be hard to remember what they are wearing.
  • Remove doggie doors as children can slip through.