The Danger Rangers are spot on! Everyone needs to be "water safe" this summer.

If you and your family haven't already gone for a swim this year, it probably won't be long. Temperatures are certainly conducive to a day in the pool. It's important, though, to remember water safety.

Drowning is the number one cause of accidental deaths and injuries in children under the age of five. Most of those tragedies occur between May and August.

Both the CDC and the American Red Cross have basic reminders to help us all keep our kids from becoming a statistic:

  • Young children should never be allowed to swim without adult supervision.
  • All children should be taught to swim with a buddy. It's never good to swim alone.
  • Teach children to swim. Find classes available in your area. It's an important skill that should be learned young.
  • The Red Cross suggests that young children who do not know how to swim wear a life jacket any time they are around water.
  • Explain to children the boundaries when you are around water, and strictly enforce them.
  • Know CPR.

Children are curious and often fearless. It only takes a few moments for something awful to happen. The most important water safety tip is constant supervision.

Southwest Louisiana has no shortage of fun places to spend the day splashing.

Sulphur Parks & Recreation Waterpark (SPAR) opens for visitors on Thursday, May 19. At $6-12 per person, it's a bargain and a fabulous way to spend a hot, summer day. My family has visited often in the past, and we plan on being "frequent flyers" again this year.

Lake Charles Ward 3 Recreation is maintaining the swimming facilities in the city. According to the calendar on their website, they even have swim class opportunities! Contact the appropriate centers for details about openings for each one.

Two of the casinos in town have pool facilities that attract visitors from Houston to Lafayette. The pools and lazy rivers at Golden Nugget and L'Auberge are amazing! You can rent cabanas for the day at each. There may be fees to visit if you aren't a guest at the hotel, so be prepared when you do visit.

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