Join the Red Cross #WaterSafetyChat June 11th at 10:30 AM

I have always lived near the water and know how important water safety is to all. I am pleased to tell you that the Red Cross is hosting a Water safety chat on Twitter. This will be an opportunity for all to ask questions, get the facts and find out about local resources for their family.


Unexpected falls into water

While most Canadians take proper precautions when planning to engage in recreational activities on the water, Red Cross reminds people to take the same safety measures while engaging in activities around the water. Every year, dozens of fatalities result from unexpected falls at waterfronts and pools. Some of these include activities at the shoreline, pool-side or by a dock. While fatalities occurred across the country, the Territories had a rate at several times the national average.

Children and young men were at the highest risk of death from unexpectedly falling into water. Children aged one to four years accounted for 21 per cent of fatalities. Overall, males were most at risk across all age groups and accounted for 81 per cent of all fatalities from unexpected falls into water. Alcohol significantly increases the risk of fatalities on and around water. Among individuals age 15 and over, alcohol consumption is a contributing factor in at least 38 per cent of deaths from unexpected falls (above legal limits).


Twitter chat details

Date: Thursday, June 11, 2015

Time: 10:30 a.m. until noon

Host: @RedCrossTalk

Topic: Q&A/chat on water safety with a focus on children

Hashtag: #WaterSafetyChat


Backyard Pools

Despite significant education efforts in water safety awareness, dozens of people die needlessly every year in backyard pools. The absence of effective adult supervision was a significant risk factor (over 80 per cent of incidents occurred when the individual was alone) for nearly all home pool drownings. Over a 20-year period, the majority of swimming pool deaths occurred in backyard pools. Backyard pool fatalities account for 30 per cent of the total number of children age 5 and under who drown.

Nearly all of these incidents resulted from falls into pools. The absence of an automatic self-closing and self-latching gate was a risk factor for nearly all incidents involving small children in home pools. Nearly all 1 to 4-year-old water-related fatalities in private residential pools may have been prevented if they had been equipped with self-closing and self-latching gates. Home pools must meet the municipal requirements for fencing, however when data were present only 16 per cent of fences met these by-law standards. Ideally, fencing should be at least one metre high and surround the pool completely and the home should never open into a pool area. The fence should include vertical bars with no horizontal bars or chain mesh that children can use to climb. Despite evidence supporting the need for safety fencing,

Canadians are not taking proper precautions to protect their families around backyard pools. The 2013 polling done by the Canadian Red Cross suggested that for 51 per cent of Canadians, ‘not allowing children under 10 to access the pool area’ was their only strategy to prevent injuries related to backyard pools. This strategy puts too much trust in a verbal command to children under ten. Alarmingly, 11 per cent of Canadian respondents who own a pool indicated they were doing nothing to prevent access to the pool for children under 10. Of those surveyed, only one third took security measures to prevent pool-related injuries, of which 36 per cent relied on four-sided fencing, 33 per cent on self-closing gates, and 28 per cent on three sided fencing using the house as the fourth side.

Visit for more information on water safety

Hope to see you there!





  1. lyndac1968 says

    Sonds like it's going to be a great chat, I find there has been a lot more pool accidents since they brought out those ez set pools, and no one is putting fences around them, driving around my area I have even seen those pools in the front yards, for anyone to use!1

  2. hmrcarlson says

    This is such an important topic. I hope that a lot of parents and pool-owners attend.

  3. Darlene Schuller says

    This is a much needed conversation, several times over the next few months..

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