Pool season is around the corner and with drowning statistics higher than ever - just yesterday a 5-year old was pulled from a Phoenix pool and rushed to the hospital (source: AZfamily.com). Which is why it's so important to know (or remind yourself) what simple tips you can use to keep your children safe around the pool this summer.

We recently spoke to two local pool industry veterans who are determined to make a difference: Dane Palmero, owner of Simply Fun Pools (a division of Overflow Pools) and Tim Maloney, a retired Phoenix firefighter and owner of Arizona Pool Fence, who are partnering to raise awareness surrounding pool safety, as well as hosting a contest to give away a pool fence to a deserving local family.

“As a former fire fighter, I saw these drownings first-hand and the majority of them could have been prevented, which is what led me to open Arizona Pool Fence,” said Maloney. “Partnering with Dane and Simply Fun Pools will help ensure that everyone is who is getting a new pool will know the benefits of having a pool fence and realize that it is a requirement in order to keep your family safe.”

Maloney and Palmero urge residents to keep in mind the following tips for pool safety this summer:

  1. Supervision is Key

The most important thing you can do to reduce the risk of drowning is to ensure there is always a responsible, attentive adult keeping an eye on children when they are near water. Don’t be distracted by cell phones, chores or other people. Drownings are known as a silent tragedy; you will not hear it happen and need to have 100% of your attention on the child.  

  1. Check Pool Fences and Gates

If there are children under the age of six living in your home, Arizona law requires that your pool area be enclosed by fencing that is at least five feet high and free of openings, along with the ability to self-close or latch. For those who already have pool fences and/or gates installed, always check the self-closing mechanisms to ensure they are functioning properly, check for broken slats or rusting and never leave a gate propped open for any reason.

  1. Invest in Swim Classes

Basic swimming lessons from an early age will be instrumental in aiding child safety in the water. The American Association of Pediatrics recommends children start taking swimming lessons from the age of one. However, Maloney adds that “no amount of swimming instruction will make a child drown-proof; supervision is still required at all times.”

  1. Learn CPR and First-Aid Procedures

Any adult or babysitter who are caring for children should know CPR and basic first-aid procedures. “Being able to perform CPR after a drowning could be the one thing that keeps a child alive until medics arrive,” said Palmero. For the nearest class to your home, contact your local fire department.

  1. Keep the Area Clear

You should never keep toys, tricycles, or other large toys in the pool area, as they could cause a child to fall into the pool accidentally. The areas surrounding the fence should also be cleared of items that a child could use to climb over the fence.

“Ultimately pool safety starts with the homeowner, and that’s why we’re hosting a contest to give one lucky family a brand new pool fence,” said Palmero.

To enter, residents must send an email to arizonapoolfence@gmail.com with the subject line POOL SAFETY CONTEST, and include their name, phone number, address and a photo of their pool with a brief paragraph on why their family is most in need of a pool fence this summer. All entries must be submitted by May 31, 2024*.

For more information, or to request a quote from Simply Fun Pools, or their parent company Overflow Pools (ROC#K-5 296578), visit www.simplyfunpoolsaz.com or call 602.725.8418.

*CONTEST RULES & REGULATIONS: The pool fence is valued at $1500. Anything larger than that must be paid out of pocket by the entrant. The contest is open to legal residents of the state of Arizona only who are at least 18 years of age and must present a valid driver’s license. The contest begins on March 25, 2024 and ends on May 31, 2024. Submissions will only be accepted via email to arizonapoolfence@gmail.com. Limit to 1 entry per person, per email address and per household for the duration of the contest period. Entries received from any person, e-mail address or household in excess of the stated limitation will be void. Arizona Pool fence will attempt to notify the winner via telephone or email on or about June 15, 2024. If the potential winner cannot be reached within five days after the first attempt to contact, a new winner will be chosen to replace them.