Aquatic experts urge parents to not let their kids go out of sight if they’re swimming in a pool.
This week alone we’re learning of reports of four children who were pulled from the water in the state, and at least two of them died.
At the Downtown YMCA in Hartford, 5-year-old Elizabeth Singh enjoyed her afternoon swim lesson. For her mother Ambica, this is also about teaching a potentially life-saving lesson.
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“I don’t know how to swim. And I think it’s a great opportunity to learn how to swim,” said Ambica Singh of Hartford.
Just this week, Hartford police said a 16-year-old died after apparently illegally swimming at a pool at Keney Park. Friends report Jaevon Whyte did not know how to swim.
Also this week two children were found unresponsive in pools in Enfield and another child, just 5 years old, drowned in a family’s backyard pool in Stratford.
“You never know. It takes two seconds for something to happen,” said Deirdre Brickhouse, the Downtown YMCA’s aquatic director.
Brickhouse points out right now the Y offers free lessons to Hartford kids ages 5 to 9.
Besides the basics, she says the classes also teach rules, like getting kids to ask for their parents’ permission before going in a pool.
And once they do go in, someone needs to keep a close eye on them at all times, even if there are lifeguards.
“As you have designated drivers, we suggest you have designated watchers. So when kids are at the pool or the lake or the beach, there is someone designated to watch the kids,” said Brickhouse.
It’s also suggested parents look around pools when they arrive for items that could help in a rescue, including a life jacket or pool noodle, that you can throw or use to reach someone in trouble.