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Safety on the Open Water

Idaho families have a wide range of water activities to choose from throughout the summer months. But before your family heads out to play at your local river, lake, or reservoir, make sure you’re prepared to practice water safety at all times.


Of all boaters who drown as a result of boating accidents, 85% would have survived if only they’d been wearing a life jacket. Keep summer fun and safe by following these important tips:
  • Make sure you and your kids always wear a life jacket approved by the U.S. Coast Guard while on boats or around open bodies of water, or participating in water sports.
  • A life jacket should fit snugly and not allow the chin or ears to slip through the neck opening.
  • Supervise children in and around open water. Appoint a designated adult as the “water watcher.”
  • Enroll your children in swim lessons. Teach them to read water, float, and stay by the shore.
  • Swim only in areas designated for swimming.
  • Teach children that open water is not the same as a pool. Explain uneven surfaces, river currents, ocean undertow, and changing weather.
  • Never dive in open water—you never know how deep the water is or what might be hidden under the surface.
  • Learn infant and child CPR, and keep a phone nearby in case of an emergency.

Safety in a Snap!

Presented by St. Luke's Children's Hospital and Kohl's Cares®

The Safety in a Snap! program focuses on motor vehicle, bike, and water safety, reminding parents and kids to snap your life jackets, bike helmets, and car seat clips or seat belts to help prevent the top three causes of death and injury to children: bike and motor vehicle accidents, and drowning. Safety in a Snap! is funded by a grant from Kohl's department stores and the Kohl's Cares® cause merchandise program. Through this initiative, Kohl's donates a percentage of sales to benefit children's health and education programs nationwide, including hospital partnerships like ours. Kohl's helps us promote safety by providing free helmets and car seats for local families.