Stay Afloat: Tips for Water Safety

Whether your summer plans include a trip to the beach, a day on the lake or just an afternoon at the pool, if you’re planning on swimming or just being around water you need to consider safety first.

A woman swimming.

While children are at the highest risk, anyone can drown. Most aquatic emergencies happen quickly and when least expected. And it doesn’t have to be while swimming. A boating or canoe trip can turn tragic if basic water safety guidelines are not followed.

Here are some safety tips if you’re planning to be on the water:

  • Learn to swim. If you don’t know how to swim, look for swim lessons in your area.
  • Even if you are a strong swimmer, know your limitations.
  • Never swim alone and only swim in designated areas.
  • Make sure you know about potential hazards like the depth of the water, currents, riptides and boating areas.
  • Inexperienced swimmers and boaters should wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets.
  • Only dive in deep water where there are no obstructions. If you’re unsure of the depth of the water, don’t dive.
  • Don’t use alcohol or drugs while engaged in any aquatic activities.
  • Learn first aid, CPR and how to use an AED. Always keep a mobile phone close by when you’re on or near the water so you can call for help if needed.

Get more water safety advice from the American Red Cross.

The University of Alabama has four pools on campus to serve students, faculty, staff and visitors. The Outdoor Pool Complex at the Student Recreation Center will be open daily from May 22 through Aug. 6. Learn more about UA’s pools on the University Recreation website.

UA Alert System Test Canceled

So as not to disturb students taking final exams, the University will not conduct a test of UA Alerts or the public address system on Wednesday, May 3. The Tuscaloosa County Emergency Management Agency will test its outdoor sirens at noon.