National Campaign Aimed to Reduce Pool Deaths

MIAMI (AP) _ Safety advocates are urging parents to be aware of swimming pool safety before summer heats up.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission will release its annual childhood drowning report Thursday in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

The report coincides with a national campaign aimed at reducing the number of deaths and injuries reported in swimming pools, spas and hot tubs.

This year, the safety commission is focusing its “Pool Safely” campaign on increasing swimming education in black and Hispanic communities.

According to research by the USA Swimming Foundation, up to 70 percent of black and Hispanic children cannot swim.

The safety commission says an annual average of 390 pool- and spa-related deaths involving children younger than 15 were reported from 2007 to 2009.

Three-quarters of those deaths involved children under age 5.