NewsCovering Kern County


Local kids sports center working to help keep children safe around pools

Posted at 7:41 PM, May 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-17 22:41:14-04

BAKERSFIELD,Calif. — According to the Center for Disease Control, drowning is the leading cause of accidental deaths for children aged one through four.

Just within the last month, two children have been found unresponsive in backyard pools here in Bakersfield.

The most recent was on Thursday where officials say a one-year-old boy was found. However, the coroner has not yet released his cause of death.

There are some programs in Bakersfield that are trying to break the cycle.

Theresa Wold, swim director for American Kids Sports Centers in Northwest Bakersfield, says they offer a course called water babies.

"It is silent and happens to the best of families,” said Wold. “It can happen to the most proactive families who are watching their kids and does just take a second for our babies to slip away.”

'Water Babies' is a free program to teach children as early as six weeks to four months on how to get equated with the water.

"There might be some hesitations, but we recommend checking in with your pediatrician and getting the OK that they can get into the water,” Wold said. “Studies show that putting your child in the water and swim lessons helps with motor skills and development.”

Wold says it's crucial that children take lessons all year-round until they are in their teens to ensure they are perfecting those lifesaving skills

"We stress having families and parents take CPR and first aid classes so that if they do find their child or loved one in the water, they can start doing compression's and ventilation's right away,” Wold said.

And the AKSC wants to remind parents of the layers of protection they can put into place when there are children in proximity of a pool.

"Having a fence around your pool having a door chimes on all your doors that allows you to know if a door has opened and having a pool alarm inside your pool-that will help you, " Wold said.