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Tips taught at Santa Clarita water safety expo

Posted: June 1, 2014 2:00 a.m.
Updated: June 1, 2014 2:00 a.m.

Skyler Presley, 6, right, of Saugus gets instruction in pool-side life-saving from city of Santa Clarita lifeguards Keone Thompson, left, and Kristen Kabach at the Water Safety Expo.

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Thousands of Santa Clarita Valley community members learned safety and prevention tips Saturday during the fourth annual “Children Drown Without a Sound” Water Safety Expo.

The Los Angeles County Fire Department and the city of Santa Clarita partnered to host the event at Fire Station 126 in Valencia on Saturday.

The event is meant to teach members of the public how to respond in case of a drowning emergency, according to Fire Department Battalion Chief Mark Savage.

“All the drownings that we have every year in Santa Clarita are preventable,” he said. “And we need the public to do their part.”

Savage said one of the most effective ways to prevent drowning emergencies is to keep an active watch on children near water, whether it be a pool or even a bathtub.

“Because it only takes seconds for a child to slip under water, and they do it silently,” he said.

Other tips include making sure fencing is properly installed and secured around pool areas or installing security devices so children do not go into the water when they are not supposed to, he said.

Officials also said swimming lessons are a way to help prevent child drownings.

“From our perspective, children drowning is preventable,” said Los Angeles County Fire Chief Daryl L. Osby. “So we really want to emphasize pool safety first, but if there is an incident, we want them to dial 911. We want to teach parents and adults how to do citizen CPR prior to firefighter arrival.”

Savage estimated around 2,000 people turned out for Saturday’s event.

“And we hope a lot of people learned a lot of things, and you don’t ever have to call 911 for a drowning,” he said.


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