When taking your children boating or swimming, make sure they have Australian Coast Guard-approved life jackets on them.
The Australian Coast Guard (ACG) has approved life jackets (also known as “personal flotation devices” or “PFDs”) as the safest and most effective equipment for preventing drowning.
Kids should always wear a life jacket near water, on boats, or docks. If your kid cannot swim, you must examine the water’s temperature and the degree of supervision before permitting them to go swimming to ensure their safety.
Choose the best kid’s life jackets this summer depending on type, style, and fit with this age-appropriate advice.
According to the Australian Coast Guard, children may only wear life jackets of Types I-III. The kind of water your kid will be swimming in should be considered when choosing a jacket.
Type I: Flotation Device for Use at Sea
Most useful for: Long-term survival in rough seas, a big open ocean, or an isolated body of water
With lots of buoyancy, it’s designed to turn an unconscious person over.
Drawbacks: They’re bulky and inconvenient to wear all day.
Vest Type II
This style is best for calm inland water and most boating activities when quick rescue is possible.
It has the benefit of being simpler to operate and less clumsy than Type I.
Using this in stormy seas for an extended period would be a mistake since it does not wake up everyone who is face up.
Type III Flotation Aid
Only still, inland waterways are appropriate for this product.
Benefits: The most comfortable and lightest option; may be worn for extended periods without feeling uncomfortable.
While some may be used in rough water, none are designed to turn someone sleeping face up.
However, when choosing a life jacket, the style below is the most important factor to consider. As seen above, there are several designs of life jackets.
Long-lasting, low-maintenance, and effort-free are the hallmarks of buoyant life jackets composed of floatable foam or neoprene.
Life jackets that inflate on contact with water will automatically deflate when submerged. The air may also be manually pumped into the tyres. They are not allowed to be used by children under the age of 16, and anyone who cannot swim is highly discouraged from doing so. Avoid utilising an inflated life jacket if you plan on getting in and out of the water often.
Children’s hybrid life jackets combine a buoyant material with an inflatable chamber and are available in small sizes. They must, however, be regularly maintained. However, since they are less hefty, they are ideal for extended usage and for those who are apprehensive about swimming with a jacket on. Unfortunately, this means they can’t be used for every water activity.
Before buying a child’s life jacket, be sure it’s USCG-approved and the correct size and weight. A neck loop and a strap between the legs should be included in the harness for little children. If you need to use the neck loop to get your kid out of the water, the leg strap will protect her from sliding.
Armband-style life jackets that wrap around a child’s body and are certified by the ACG will also work. These help your kid get used to wearing a life jacket and realise she may still have fun while doing so.
A Coast Guard-approved child life jacket does not guarantee that it is the best one for your child. Proper fit is vital, says Personal Flotation Device Manufacturers Association Executive Director Bernice McArdle.” Unfortunately, the most common mistake parents make when buying a life jacket is choosing one that does not fit properly.”
Lastly, McArdle points out that parents often purchase a life jacket that is much too big for their child because they believe their child “will grow into it” (and may easily fall off). If the life jacket doesn’t fit properly, it won’t be as effective for your youngster.” The shopping procedure may assist your child in wanting to wear their life jacket rather than feel compelled.
Have You Ever Heard Of Baby Life Preservers?
Even while there are kid’s life jackets, the bulk of them has a weight range of 0 to 30 pounds for newborns up to 18 pounds, making it dubious that these jackets can guarantee a safe fit without overpowering babies. In addition, there is now an Australian Coast Guard warning against taking babies out on recreational boats because of the danger of drowning. “Unless parents can test it out in an infant life jacket in a swimming pool, this device cannot float their child with its head out of the water. So be certain your youngster is wearing a proper life jacket if you have one. Otherwise, the Coast Guard website cautions against taking the child out on the water in a boat if there is any risk of damage or death.
In calm inland waters, drownings are more prevalent. Many people drowned despite being just a few feet away from safety and without wearing life jackets. Don’t forget to wear your child’s life jacket if you purchase one, and make sure it’s the proper size for their activity level in the water.