Le Bonheur promotes swimming safety

By Ben Watson - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Swim safety is more important than ever after two Mid-South children died when they drowned in two separate incidents in the first week of summer.

Bailey Archey, 14, has been swimming since she was a year old.

"I just like it when it's really hot outside, you can get in and cool off," Archey said.  "It's fun if there is something like a water slide or something."

The Archeys and their neighbors enjoy playing in the water, but urged others to do so safely.

"The most important thing is to make sure your child can swim and is comfortable with the water as soon as possible," said Bailey's mother, Susan Archey.

Susan Archey also said it is important that parents and other adults who know how to swim are watching children when they are swimming.  If a child gets in trouble in the water, someone should be there to rescue them.

"Just because you know how to swim, you may not know how to rescue someone who's drowning," Susan Archey said.  "It's important you know how to rescue someone in a situation like that, otherwise you could drown yourself."

Officials at Le Bonheur Children's Medical Center agree.  The facility has a program called Make A Splash.  It teaches children how to be safe in the water.

Le Bonheur safety tips include establishing a buddy system and knowing your limits.  Do not stay in the water too long and if you are not a good swimmer, do not go in water that is too deep.

Bailey Archey said she was well aware of that warning, and the warning about diving into a pool.

"Just don't put yourself in situations where you can hit your head on the floor," she said.  "Don't do tricks and stuff that you don't know how to do."

Experts said even if you do not swim for fun, it is important to know basic water safety in case you end up in a situation such as flooding.

For more information on Le Bonheur's Make A Splash program, click here.

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