Watch CBS News

Several Drownings In Massachusetts Spur Focus On Water Safety

NATICK (CBS) - On any given day at the Longfellow Sports Club in Natick, there could be as many as six lifeguards on duty at one time.

"It can be stressful if it's really full. We're hoping for the best but planning for worst," said Chelo Crag, lifeguard supervisor.

She spoke after a half-dozen drownings have been reported in Massachusetts this week.

Chelo Crag, lifeguard supervisor at Longfellow Sports Club in Natick, keeps an eye on swimmers. (WBZ-TV)

Authorities say there have been six drownings in the last three days in communities including Westwood, Worcester, Saugus, and Lynn.

"It's remarkably sad because it's totally preventable," Crag said.

Crag says they are constantly going over their Emergency Action Plan.

"We have our first aid kit, we have an extra tube if needed, and we also have our panic button, which is essentially just a life alert," she showed WBZ-TV. "We are constantly scanning the pool, scanning the deck."

pool-natick swim safety
Swimmers at the Longfellow Sports Club in Natick. (WBZ-TV)

"You never want to get closer than an arms length away because ... if you are closer they can reach onto you and can either choke you or make you distressed as well," Crag said.

She says floating devices are very helpful.

"If you have a device, whether it's a rope or a flotation device, throw it to them. They can grab on and you can just pull them in," she said.

Crag also says knowing CPR is critical and parents should teach their kids how to swim.

"Floaties and life jackets do not make a child invincible. They are still capable of drowning," she said.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.