It takes tenacity to prevent a tragedy.
Sometimes it means moving quickly in an emergency to save a life. Or it can mean preparing for accidents before they happen.
Logan Norrod exercised the first sort of tenacity when he responded to a young boy falling into the rushing creek waters at Falls Park in Pendleton on April 22. The boy, who appeared to be under 10 years of age, fell into about 8 feet of water near a popular bridge in the park and was pulled under the surface at least twice.
Norrod instructed his wife, Emily, to call for help as he removed his clothing to jump in. The water tried to suck both the boy and Norrod under. He saved the boy’s life.
Now let’s discuss stopping water tragedies before they occur.
Summer is coming, and children are likely to seek watering spots to cool off.
That means being prepared. Drowning is the top cause of injury-related deaths for children ages 1 to 4 and the third-leading cause of unintentional injury-related death among children 19 and younger, according to safekids.org.
Here are some safety tips to follow from Safe Kids and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
• Make sure your children learn basic swimming and water safety rules. Infants can often learn to swim before they walk.
• Adults supervision is critical, whether at home, in a public pool or in a waterway. Supervising adults should avoid distracting activities such as reading, using the phone or consuming alcohol or drugs. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends “touch supervision,” meaning the adult is no more than an arm’s length away from a child around water.
• Use life jackets. Whether near natural bodies of water or at the pool or water park, make sure your child wears a life jacket that fits properly and is approved by the U.S. Coast Guard.
• Install fences around home pools, irrigation ditches, drainage ditches and ponds. Fences should be at least 4 feet tall with self-closing and self-latching gates.
• Understand and know the risks of lakes, rivers, oceans and rivers; they all have hidden hazards — much like the current in Falls Park.
• Learn CPR and other water rescue skills. Even the most vigilant parent or guardian might be faced with an accident or injury.
All those tips lead to one point: Be ready.
You never know when you might be called on to save a life. So always remember to be prepared.