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Injury Prevention

Adult Water Safety

In Ontario, the major contributors to an adult drowning include:

  • Not wearing a PFD - this continues to be an issue particularly among men and is the number one contributing factor in recreational boating drownings.
  • Consumption of alcoholic beverages - alcohol is a contributing factor in half of all water-related deaths among men 18 to 49 years of age.
  • Persons on or near the water ALONE - two-thirds of victims over 50 years of age, and almost all young children under five years, were alone when the drowning occured.

(The Royal Life Saving Society Canada Report 2016)


  • Wear a lifejacket or PFD
  • If you drink, don't drive your boat
  • Be prepared, get trained
  • Avoid swimming alone

For the full report on drowning statistics and information in Ontario, click Lifesaving Society - Ontario Drowning Report.

Diving Safety

Before diving, it is important to think about HOW you'll enter the water. The Canadian Red Cross has some safety tips.

Did you know?

  • Diving is the leading sports-related cause of spinal-cord injuries.
  • Many diving incidents result in quadriplegia - a partial or complete loss of functioning in legs, arms and the trunk area. Almost 90% of people with serious injuries caused by careless diving are confined to a wheelchair FOR LIFE.
  • 95% of diving injuries occur in water five feet deep or less, in an unsupervised setting with no warning signs.
  • The typical diving-related spinal injury occurs in males, 17-22 years old, with no formal training in diving.
  • Diving incidents often occur during a first-time visit to the location.
  • Over 50% of diving injuries/deaths involve alcohol and/or drug abuse.
  • Over 40% of spinal injuries caused by careless diving occur in backyard pools.
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