One of the dangers that a lot of parents are worry about is the safety of their children around a pool. A child will usually lose conciousness after 2 minutes and brain damage will occur after 4 - 6 minutes, if they survive. But a large number of kids don't. Another scary stat from Safe Kids Worldwide is that 9 out of 10 kids who drown are being supervised. All it takes is for you to be inattentive or turn your back for one minute for an accident to occur.
There are many safety precautions that parents can take to ensure that their kids don't drown but I think one of the most important things a parent can do is teaching their kids to swim at a very young age. That's why I was very impressed with an initiative in the United States (as well as in some other countries around the world) called Infant Swimming Resource. They teach children from as young as 6 months to self-rescue until help can come along to get them out of the pool.
According to their website:
"ISR’s unique results are achieved through fully customized, safe and effective, one-on-one lessons with only your child and the Instructor in the water. What your child will learn, and the way he or she will learn it, is what makes ISR so different from traditional swimming lessons.
What your child will learn depends his or her age and developmental readiness, but in all cases, at minimum, your child will learn to roll onto his or her back to float, rest, and breathe, and to maintain this position until help arrives."
Of course this doesn't mean that it's free reign to leave your children unattended, their safety should always be your top priority.
Would you want your child to have this skill?