Panama City Beach- A few weeks ago we told you about a class offered locally that could save your child from drowning. Today we got a chance to see the toddlers in action. Betty was 10 months old when her parents enrolled her in the infant self rescue course and now at the ripe old age of 11 months she's graduating the course. "A child Betty's age from 6-12 months usually takes about 3 to 5 weeks to become skilled, but not every child is the same", said ISR instructor Susannah St. Peter.
Betty learned how to rescue herself if she were to fall into a body of water with no one else around. She would roll onto her back, floats in the water, and then cry loudly until somebody comes and helps her. "Whether or not they're with someone or without someone if a child like Betty were to crawl or walk in any sort of body of water she would be able to save herself", said St. Peter.
With drowning being the leading cause of death in children the ages of 4 and under, parents are thrilled they now have a way to prevent their children from drowning.” As much water as we have in our community between backyard pools, community pools, the bay, the gulf, rivers, and creeks. We just felt like it was one of the steps needed to take to protect our child”, said Betty’s father Wil Spivey.
Spivey says even if he wasn't a lifeguard himself he would still suggest this course to other parents.” It’s just like any other precaution you would take like vaccinations or child proofing your home any of that sort of stuff and in an area with so much water I almost feel obligated to do that sort of thing for our baby", said Spivey. There are 789 documented cases of ISR students saving themselves using self-rescue techniques, but the program is no substitute for parental supervision. Experts suggest you consult your child's pediatrician before enrolling them in the course.