What Your Residents Need to Know About Dry Drowning – by Kings III Emergency Communications

Reprinted with permission from AOA.

Have a pool on your property?  You know that presents a whole new set of safety issues that you, as the property manager/owner are liable for.  With pool season in full swing, it is no surprise that there have been an increasing amount of drownings and other pool horror stories present in the spotlight lately.  Most recently, one reported story hit close to home for us here at Kings III.

Over Memorial Day weekend a four-year old took a swim and ended up passing away a day later due to dry drowning. 

This one really shook us up, not only because it took place near our headquarters in Texas, but because it was such a young life, a tragic story and potentially preventable.  Dry drowning is a real phenomenon and it occurs more often than you think.  It is so important that you warn your residents of something they might not otherwise be aware.

What is Dry Drowning?

Dry drowning, sometimes called delayed drowning, can happen hours after a person intakes a large amount of water into the lungs or survives an underwater drowning experience.  It occurs when a person breathes in small amounts of water during a struggle, triggering their airway to spasm and close, making breathing difficult.

Resident Prevention Tips

In order to lessen the likelihood of dry drowning, advise your residents of the following:

  • Know the limitations of the swimmers in your group
  • Always keep a close eye on inexperienced swimmers and small children near water
  • Make sure everyone in your family knows how to swim
  • Learn CPR

Symptom Recognition

Dry drowning symptoms are not always easy to spot, especially in young children who may naturally be cranky or tired after a day in the sun and water.  Residents should keep an eye out for these signs of dry drowning after going for a swim:

  • Sudden changes in behavior (i.e. irritability)
  • Coughing
  • Chest pain
  • Extreme fatigue

For more symptoms and prevention tips, see our blog post “Pool on the Property?  Have You Educated Your Residents on Dry and Secondary Drownings?  (http://bit.ly/2r9GkjL)

What to Do

If residents recognize symptoms of dry drowning in themselves or someone else, the victim should be taken to the emergency room as soon as possible, as time is the most important factor for survival rate.  Dry drowning can be treated with medical observation, oxygen or ventilation if needed.  Most cases are not fatal if treated in time.

For more pool safety tips with action items for both you and your residents, see Kings III’s guide – Public Pool Maintenance and Safety (http://bit.ly/21AwmzY).

Kings III Emergency Communications is the nation’s only full service provider of emergency communication solutions.  The company has installed thousands of emergency phones through the United States and Canada.  They are fully integrated; not only engineering and manufacturing emergency phones, but also providing one-stop-shop solutions that include installation, maintenance and 24/7 emergency monitoring for emergency help phones utilized at poolside, in elevators, parking areas, stairwells and more.  For more information, visit www.kingsiii.com

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