Change the Stats this Summer: Florida Ranks Highest in the Nation in Drowning Deaths for Young Children

Change the Stats this Summer: Florida Ranks Highest in the Nation in Drowning Deaths for Young Children on

With the right precautions and training, drowning is completely preventable

Summer is here, which probably means that your children are looking for things to do. And in Florida, that often means water, whether it’s a dip in the pool or a trip to the Gulf, a lake, or the ocean.

While water activities are an essential part of growing up in Florida, they can quickly become deadly, as numerous grieving parents can attest. Our state has the unfortunate distinction of having the most drowning deaths in the U.S. for children four and under, and drowning is the leading cause of injury death among this age group. Florida is ranked second in the nation for drowning deaths among children one to 14. According to statistics from the Florida Department of Children and Families, 84 kids drowned in Florida in 2015.

Most troubling is the fact that the majority of those under the age of five drown in backyard pools with an adult close by – but not watching – the child. Among children ages five to nine, the greatest source of risk is a tie between the bathtub and swimming in an open body of water, where currents, distance, and fatigue can threaten even children who know how to swim. No matter the setting, adults can too easily get distracted, said SwimLife founder Kelly Whittemore, who teaches children to swim in Sanford.

“A child can drown in the seconds it takes to return a text message,” Whittemore said.

Another issue is that often a child in distress will go unnoticed because of how quietly an emergency can happen.

“Hollywood has done us all a big disservice,” Whittemore continued. “They’ve made it look like there’s lots of splashing and noise involved. In reality, a child can slip in without a splash and there’s no noise. That’s how quickly and silently it happens.”

How to keep the kids safe this summer

No matter where you are, if there is water nearby, you have to be vigilant. Here are some important tips to follow:

  1. Always have an adult watching at all times without electronic devices, alcohol, or any other things that can cause distraction.
  2. Be sure everyone knows how to swim – lessons are important – and use life jackets and inflatable floaties if necessary.
  3. Keep pool fences and gates closed and latched when the pool isn’t being used; even if your kids are familiar with the pool safety rules, that doesn’t mean your neighbors’ kids are.
  4. Make sure at least one person – preferably the adult doing the supervising – knows basic life-saving techniques like CPR and, ideally, the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED).

If your kids or children you are responsible for will be doing a lot of swimming this summer, you need to do everything you can to keep them safe. And if you have never learned CPR or maybe it’s been a few years, One Beat CPR can help by teaching you how to respond in an emergency.

We offer an assortment of classes on CPR, first aid, how to use an AED, and more. We also have pediatric advanced life support certifications and recertifications for healthcare providers that are specifically designed to improve the response to and management of pediatric emergencies. All of our classes are taught by professionals and many of them can be conducted in your own home, business, or other facility.

For any questions or to learn more about what we offer, call us at 954-321-5305 or send us a message through our online contact form.

June is the Perfect Time to Raise Awareness of CPR

June is the Perfect Time to Raise Awareness of CPR on

If more people knew CPR, thousands of lives could be saved each year

Did you know that sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) is the leading cause of death in the U.S.? More than 350,000 people die each year from SCA, which is almost 960 individuals every single day. Another sobering statistic: The survival rate for people who suffer cardiac arrest outside of a hospital and are treated by Emergency Medical Services is only about 10 percent.

The good news? When CPR is performed immediately and an AED is available, the chances of survival can double or even triple. CPR and AED training is vital. This is especially good to remember now, as the first week of June is designated as CPR Awareness Week. Here’s a great example of what CPR can do:

Last August, Manhattan financial executive Jeffrey Feig was on vacation when he went into cardiac arrest and stopped breathing. Immediately, people took action. While one person called an ambulance, another started chest compressions. A third person began mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, and a fourth grabbed an AED and used it to get his heart back to a normal rhythm. Thanks to these trained individuals, Feig not only survived, but he didn’t suffer any lasting heart or brain damage.

While remarkable, this story isn’t entirely uncommon. Many lives have been saved due to quick thinking and CPR/AED training. So why don’t more people get trained or take action when someone needs help? There are many myths surrounding SCA, including:

  • It’s better to wait for medical professionals to arrive

Every second is critical when some is in cardiac arrest. For each minute that someone doesn’t get CPR or defibrillation, their chances of survival go down by 7 to 10 percent.

  • Elderly people are the only ones affected

The truth is that sudden cardiac arrest can happen to anyone and, in fact, over 7,000 instances every year affect youths under age 18. And remember Jeffrey Feig? He was only 50.

  • Only people with a history of heart problems can suffer from SCA

In many cases, someone may not know they have a heart problem until they go into cardiac arrest.

  • Untrained people can’t operate an AED

AEDs are now fairly easy to use, with clear directions that are simple to follow. Untrained users can and do save lives. That said, training should be encouraged to ensure their proper use.

  • An AED will hurt someone by shocking them

If someone is in cardiac arrest, this means that they are clinically dead, so a shock won’t hurt them. AEDs are safe when used properly, and the shocks are designed to get the heart beating as it should.

More good news: Recognizing how important CPR is, many people are now deciding to take classes or refresher courses. In fact, just two weeks before Jeffrey Feig went into cardiac arrest, the place where he was staying had conducted a class so people could learn CPR.

Feel like it’s time you finally learned CPR, or simply want to brush up on your knowledge? You can schedule training with One Beat CPR right now. We offer an assortment of classes that cover all life-saving tactics, including CPR, AEDs, first aid, and advanced cardiac life support. Taught by paramedics, police officers, and firefighters, this training can take place in your home or business.

If you are ever in a situation where you would need to administer CPR to a friend, co-worker, or even a stranger, you will be glad you know what to do. And if you’re the one in distress, you’ll be grateful that someone nearby got the right training. For more information about One Beat CPR and what we can do for you, can send us a message through our online contact form.