Swim instructors worry child drownings will increase this summer as more Northeast Ohio families buy backyard pools

Pool sales have skyrocketed across the country due to the COVID-19 pandemic
Updated: Jul. 7, 2020 at 10:31 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - In the market for a pool? Good luck. A quick search on Home Depot or Lowe’s shows every pool, above ground or inflatable, is sold out.

“We have seen an increase in pool sales over the last few months,” said Jenna Lunger, owner of One Swim. “Personally, I upgraded my pool also because I knew pools would be closed this summer. People want to have fun with their kids this summer.”

Pool sales have skyrocketed across the country due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Lunger is the owner of One Swim. She offers private and group lessons to kids.

“We’ve seen pools go out of stock almost everywhere, but we’ve also seen a decline in water safety,” explained Lunger. “Children are obviously not enrolled in swim lessons, so it creates an instance where children are more susceptible to drownings or incidents in the water.”

According to the National Safety Council more than 80% of drownings occur in residential pools. Lunger is concerned that child drownings will rise with less children enrolled in swim lessons.

“I’m extremely concerned,” Lunger said. “Every time I see a drowning on the news it just breaks my heart because drowning is preventable.”

As a mom herself, Lunger understands why parents are hesitant to return to swim lessons. She also says she is not worried about her business because she has very low operating costs.

“So, we will bounce back,” Lunger said. “I’m not worried about that what I’m more worried about is drownings that are going to happen this summer so what we’re trying to do is put out free content to parents that maybe aren’t ready to return to lessons but they can still do water safety at home with their children.”

Lunger is working on getting that free content up on YouTube. She also had this advice for parents who are at home with their kids and have a pool: make sure you watch your kids while they are swimming, that you put up barriers to any kind of water access in your backyard and that you have small children wear a life jacket in the pool even if they know how to swim.

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