Are you planning a fun family trip to the aquarium this November? While it's an exciting adventure, it's essential for parents to stay vigilant about aquarium visits and water safety.
Aquariums are jam-packed with mesmerizing marine life and interactive exhibits. That said, they can also pose some hidden risks for your curious little ones. Read on for a closer look at what parents should know about aquarium visits and water safety.
Stay Hydrated and Sunscreen Ready
Aquariums often have outdoor exhibits or areas where you can enjoy the sunshine. Even in November, you should be prepared with sunscreen and water bottles. The sun's rays can still be potent even when it isn’t hot outside. Additionally, dehydration can sneak up on you when you're busy exploring. Sunburns are not only painful but can also spoil the fun for the kids.
Dress Appropriately for Water Play
Many aquariums have touch tanks and interactive displays so kids can get up-close-and-personal with aquatic creatures. Be prepared for these water activities by dressing your little ones in swimwear or clothes that can get wet. Having spare clothes on hand is a good idea in case they end up soaked.
Aquarium Visits and Water Safety Starts with Obeying the Rules
Aquariums typically have rules and guidelines in place for your safety. These may include instructions on how to interact with marine life, where to stand, and which areas to avoid. Make sure you and your children are aware of, and adhere to, these rules. They are there for a reason: to keep everyone safe.
While aquariums are designed with safety in mind, it's essential to keep a close eye on your children at all times. Little ones can quickly get lost in the excitement and wonder of the exhibits. Hold hands, use leashes or harnesses for toddlers, and never leave them unattended. Active supervision is always important when there is water nearby.
According to the CDC, every year in the United States there are an estimated:
- 4,000 fatal unintentional drownings—that is an average of 11 drowning deaths per day.
- 8,000 nonfatal drownings—that is an average of 22 nonfatal drownings per day.
Aquariums often have beautiful water features like ponds, streams, or artificial waterfalls. These can be enticing for children to explore, but they can also be dangerous. To prevent accidents, make sure your kids don't run or play too close to these water features.
Know the Emergency Procedures
Before you start your aquarium adventure, familiarize yourself with the location of emergency exits, first-aid stations, and staff members who can assist in case of an emergency. While it's essential to stay safe, it's also reassuring to know that help is available if you need it.
Keep an Eye on Overhead Exhibits
Some aquariums have breathtaking overhead exhibits where you can walk through glass tunnels surrounded by marine life. These are fantastic experiences, but it's crucial to remind your kids not to jump or lean on the glass. While it's sturdy, it's better to be cautious.
Avoid Running or Climbing
Kids are full of energy, and the excitement of an aquarium visit can make them want to run or climb on structures. Discourage these behaviors, as slippery floors and uneven terrain can lead to slips and falls. It's important to maintain a level of control in order to prevent accidents.
Teach Your Kids About Respect for Marine Life
Use this opportunity to educate your children about respecting marine life and their natural habitats. Emphasize the importance of not tapping on glass or trying to feed the fish in their exhibits.
Not only is this a matter of safety, but it's also crucial for the wellbeing of the animals. By staying cautious and informed about water safety, you can ensure that your visit is fun and accident-free. Remember, "aquarium visits and water safety" should always go hand-in-hand to make sure your family enjoys a safe and exciting day at the aquarium. Now get out there and look some sharks and squid in the eye!