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AMR Issues Water Safety Tips Ahead of Memorial Day



AMR Yakima wants to remind residents of the importance of boating and swimming safety ahead of the Memorial Day weekend.

As area residents are making plans for Memorial Day weekend, American Medical Response (AMR) Yakima wants to remind them of the importance of boating and swimming safety.  
In 2017, the U.S. Coast Guard reported more than 4,000 recreational boating accidents resulting in 658 deaths and 2,629 injuries. Additionally, 1.2 million people drown worldwide every year, with half of those being children and more than one-quarter of them being people who knew how to swim.

While drowning accidents can happen any time of the year, incidents increase during warm weather months when more people enjoy water recreation. Most drowning incidents occur in open water, lakes, rivers, ponds, and the open sea where lifeguards are limited.
David Lynde, Operations Manager for AMR Yakima has several suggestions to help prevent water accidents.

A few simple but vital steps to keep you safe while boating:
•    Always wear a lifejacket or personal floatation device
•    Take a boating safety course
•    Avoid alcohol and drug use
•    Check the weather forecast before heading out
•    Learn to swim
•    Never stand up in your small powerboat, canoe, or similar watercraft
•    Don't overload your boat 
•    Use common sense and operate responsibly

Things to keep in mind when swimming:

•    Never swim alone
•    Only use approved flotation devices; do not rely on toys or inner tubes
•    Don’t take chances by overestimating your swimming skills
•    Swim only in designated swimming areas 
•    Watch small children near water 
•    Never dive into rivers or lakes; each year nearly 3,000 people are paralyzed as a result of           diving into shallow water or hitting an unseen underwater obstruction
AMR is committed to the health and wellbeing of the communities it serves. Our first responders promote safety and preparedness to save lives and prevent both injury and disability. To learn more about boating safety, please visit www.americanboating.org

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