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Stay Safe While Keeping Cool!

Summer is here and it’s time for trips to the shore, vacations, backyard barbecues, and much more. And as you find creative ways to have fun and cool off, many will look towards water parks. Whether it’s a quick trip with the family to beat the sun or a group of friends looking to enjoy their summer as much as possible, water parks have been an American summer staple for years.

But while it’s easy to see water parks simply as a fun getaway, there are plenty of risks to be aware of before your next visit. From crowded venues to dangers lurking in the water, a trip to a water park this summer may end up being a regretful decision.

With this in mind, here are four water park risks to be aware of this summer.

Recreational water illnesses (RWIs) are caused by germs spread by swallowing, breathing in mists or aerosols of, or having contact with contaminated water in swimming pools, hot tubs, water parks, and other locations where we swim in water, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. RWIs can be a variety of infections, including gastrointestinal, skin, ear, respiratory, eye, neurologic, and wound infections. The most commonly reported RWI is diarrhea.

It goes without saying that certain parts of a water park will be slippery. While they do all they can to make surfaces slip-proof, trips and slips can still happen. Tripping, in particular, is especially hazardous as an individual could fall into a pool and possibly drown if they get injured during the fall or through panic. There will also be items laying around – towels, water toys, bags of clothing, etc. – so keep a close eye on children, and set some ground rules such as not running and taking care on steps leading into pools.

Water parks are a popular destination during the summer, meaning overcrowded pools are bound to occur. If you are not a particularly strong swimmer, keep an eye out for how many lifeguards are on duty and staying as close to one as possible without compromising your ability to have fun.

A major point of attraction at water parks are the rides. As guests accelerate going down the various types of slides and tubes, they can injure themselves in the process, which can be exacerbated as they’re propelled down into the water. Make sure a ride operator checks your weight, height, age, if you have the appropriate footwear an, and are correctly positioned on the attraction before clearing you to go on the ride.