News 4 Lifesaver

Jul 25, 2013 9:00 PM by Kristi Tedesco

Emotional impact of drowning

Tucson - August is Drowning Impact Awareness Month. There is just over a month left in this year's swim season and this is the time when people let their guard down.

Kids will be back in school soon and will bring a lot of distractions which takes our attention away from the water.

Tracy Koslowski with Safe Kids Pima County and Drexel Heights Fire Department invited Kristi's Kids to a recent water safety presentation.

"Arizona unfortunately has the distinction of always being one of the top 4 states in the country with the most drownings for children."

Koslowski was teaching water safety to support staff from Chicanos por la Causa which operates early childhood development centers throughout the state.

"Drowning is the number 2 killer next to trauma."

Koslowski wants everyone to know why august is Drowning Impact Awareness Month."

"Statistically we started to see numbers go up at the end of the pool season, in August specifically, because they're distractions with back to school."

As the swim season winds down, there's temptation to let our guards down.

But that's when a tragedy can happen-a tragedy with lasting emotional fallout. Families who lose a child to drowning are often torn apart due to guilt and blame. There is a 90% divorce rate among families following a drowning or when a child is severely injured in a water incident.

So in August purple ribbons are around reminding us to stay vigilant.

"We're going to give you a purple ribbon to wear. And if somebody asks you, ‘what's that purple ribbon for?' Maybe you know a family who has had a drowning."

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