This is why we should talk about it. This is my story and i hope that be retelling it that someone listens and takes note that drowning can happen to them. After reading a few post on EB over the last 6 months there are some who just dont 'get it'. I read with disgust a bath supervision topic and so many kids are not being supervised during bath time. These kids are as young as 2. Seriously who doesnt watch a child when in water??? this is our life now without Hannah please dont let it be you. Supervise your kids at all times and have barriers in place for whatever water activity or environment you are in.
Four years ago this was our story http://sixtyminutes.ninemsn.com.au/stories...troubled-waters
in 2008 on Hannah's Anniversary we filmed with Tara Brown on 60 Minutes with the Harris Family in Victoria. In December 2008 we had Hannah's Inquest, this November the Harris' have their inquest for Lauren. In this program we support the ISR program, so much so that we had young Harry trained in it last December travelling to Sydney. Its our belief that EVERY CHILD should be able to roll over an...d float and have THEIR FACE UP FIRST instead of Hold your breath and swim to the edge which is most likely what Hannah did, its what she was taught. Please dont ignore the skills kids need but dont ever rely on 'swimming' because it wont save your life. If only is a question I ask every day Why wasnt Hannah able to get out of the pool when she could swim. dont let us be you.
Hannah died by drowning in our back yard pool (it was illegally built to safety standards and TWO professionals who had seen it never raised the issue) and suffered a heart attack that she could not be revived from.
Many children that drown are in environments that they shouldnt be in, their carers/parents last saw them in anoth...er room or where thought to be with the other carer/parent, many children who drown are enrolled in swim lessons at the time of their death and most if not of all those parents believed that their child could 'save themselves' as they did in lessons many times.
The fact is that Lessons and kids are controlled and drowning is silent, alone and unfamiliar which leads to panic. In the advocacy of myself, Kat Plint her belief is that many children drown and panic due to the temperature of the pool water. lessons are in heated pools most homes/dams/creeks arent. Cold water create panics and instantly the body wants to shiver but sadly being vertical in the water and weighed down by clothes kids are expected to survive. After 18 coronial inquests that I have attended not once has this issue been addressed by a coroner. NOt even in our own daughters inquest was it raised... WHY?? because NOT one person or invesigator took the temperature of the pool when they arrived.
Always supervise your kids around water, lock external doors to outside areas and be familiar with your environment. Many children drown in backyard pools whilst visiting friends, neighbours or simply didnt KNOW the pool was even there and thought the back yard was Pool free. If you have a pool please place a sign at your front door saying "we have a pool please SUPERVISE your children". All pools need to be fenced according to the AS1926.1 Standard and In Qld you can not rent/lease or buy a house WITHOUT a pool safety certificate and all pools must be registered on the Pool Safety Council's registered 4th November 2011.
for Bath safety please supervise your child always and never turn your back on them even to grab a towel from next the room. Sadly three children aged 14 months, 3.5 years and 5 years 1 month have drowned over the past month from being left UNATTENDED in the bath/shower only to drown and not to be revived.
Home safety - mop buckets, dogs bowls, wshing the car, horse troughs and any water that is more than 3cm will drown and kill a child. The top loader washing machine has killed three children in four years. Lock your laundry door so kids cant access it.
Farm safety is crucially important that Houses need safe play areas and these areas need fencing that is secure and at a height that prevents children from roaming and accessing dams/creeks/irrigational channels.
Beach safety is swim between the red/yellow flags, always make sure your children are wearing high visibility swim clothes that you can idenitify with and also put bracelets on your children with your mobile phone number and their name.
Boating - when on the water on boats etc please ensure that all NON SWIMMERS are in life jackets that are approved for Boating. A reflective life jacket with a floatation collar is designed to keep your face up and you floating on your back when you are in the water. Most jackets should have a whistle and reflectors. if you are taking passengers that havent been boating it is your responsibility to teach your passengers the safety procedures in water and ensure their safety at all times. Everyone under 12 has to legally wear a life jacket and all NON SWIMMERS.
CHILDREN OF ALL AGES WHO ARE NON SWIMMERS (can not swim more than 50m) have to be in ARMS REACH AT ALL TIMES and do ont leave children in water with Swim vests or toys and rely on them as a drowning prevention safety item. THEY ARE DANGEROUS and all require SUPERVISION and ADULTS to be with them.
All children need to supervised and we hope that this Spring/Summer season that your children enjoy the water and are safe! Please eyes on all at times and never ever rely on someone else to watch your children.
this safety message proudly supports National Drowning Prevention, Awareness and Memorial Day on 4th October 2011. Please take a minute at 2pm to remember all those lost to drowning and those who are injured and their families. Over 315 families last year were affected and since 2008 Hannah's Foundation has supported over 468 families.
keep safe around water, heads up, face up first, float on your back and Put your hand up!
I hope no one ever experiences this on any level whether a parent, sibling, emergency worker or neighbour, doctor or nurse. THe experience is horrific and I wouldnt wish it on anyone. I just want to you to listen and take action and keep your kids safe. We did everything right with Hannah and it failed dont let us be you.