As summer nears many turn to water activities to cool off. But the fun can turn tragic in an instant.
Charleston is surrounded by water, and according to the State Child Fatality Advisory Committee is one of the leading causes of death in children ages one to four years old.
The Centers for Disease Control says many Americans do not have basic swimming skills and that lack of skills is contributing to alarming drowning statistics, which are higher in adults.
From 2005 to 2014, there were an average of 3,536 drownings each year, an average of 10 per day, according to the CDC website.
From 2006-2015 there have been 702 people who have died from drowning in South Carolina. “There are a large population of south Carolinian who don’t know how to swim,” Shannon Palm with Children’s Trust said.
With more adults dying from drowning than kids those who teach swim classes said it could because of a false sense of security.
“If you’re not comfortable around the water you have a false sense of security and it’s pretty dangerous,” Chris Miller with Palmetto Masters said.
Governor McMaster has issued May to be Water Safety Awareness Month, with several Lowcountry cities also observing the month and water safety and education can lead to drowning prevention.
Several locations offer swimming lessons throughout the Lowcountry:
- City of Charleston Aquatics
- City of North Charleston Aquatics
- Mt. Pleasant WATER program
- Mt Pleasant Aquatics
- Lowcountry Aquatic Project Swimming
- American Red Cross
- Infant Swimming Resource
- St. Andrews Parks
- Dorchester County YMCA
- Summerville YMCA
- Martinsburg-Berkeley County Parks and Rec
- Berkeley County YMCA
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