Hot tubs may provide a place for a family to come together and bond. On the other hand, they can present unknown hazards to children that all parents need to be made aware of. At Goodall Pools and Spas, we are happy to work with you so that the hot tub you buy has the safety features you need.
Children, Hot Tubs, and Accidents
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), one-fifth of hot tub drownings are of children under the age of 5. Between 2017 and 2019, nearly 7,000 children were treated in emergency departments for non-drowning hot tub injuries with 5,100 of those being under the age of 5. Other accidents that frequently occur may be prevented if adults take the following precautions:
- Never leave children of any age unsupervised. Not even for a nanosecond. Drowning happens quickly. If the child is not tall enough to stand on the bottom of the hot tub and keep his or her head above the water, the danger of drowning increases.
- Keep the drains in proper working order. In rare situations, people, particularly children, have drowned when they went underwater and their hair got trapped in a drain. They were unable to be rescued in time to save their lives. Dr. Ditte Karlovits, a pediatrician, mother, and hot tub owner says that “no one should submerge their head underwater in a hot tub. If the drain cover is missing or damaged, shut down the hot tub or spa until the cover is replaced.”
- Infants should stay out of hot tubs. Their skin is fragile which makes them more susceptible to overheating.
- Other young children should not be allowed in the spa unless they can stand on the bottom with their heads completely out.
- Young children should not submerge themselves completely but sit on the benches in the hot tub, so they are not entirely under the water.
- If the hot tub temperature is 104° or hotter, children should not soak for more than 5 minutes.
- If the hot tub temperature is lowered to 98°, children can stay in for 15 minutes at a time.
Other CPSC Recommendations
In addition to what has already been discussed, the CPSC suggests those with children using the hot tub should also follow these additional safety precautions:
- Always use a cover with a safety lock on your hot tub when it is not in use.
- Make sure your hot tub has dual drains and drain covers.
- Make certain all users, including children, know where the cut-off switch is and how to use it in case of an emergency.