After Her Son Drowns, Mom Invents A Pool Safety Product!
The Hughes family takes an annual beach vacation in Alabama with five other families, but this year, their tradition turned deadly when three-year-old Levislipped away and drowned. He was watching TV with other kids and slipped out undetected and got into the pool before anyone noticed. His mom, Nicole, found him just minutes later and all the fathers on the trip are all doctors, so they tried desperately to save him, even getting a pulse before the ambulance arrived, but the toddler passed away on June 11th.
Since then, the family has been grieving and mourning the loss of little Levi, but his mom also got to work. She researched stats on drowning and found that 69% of drowning accidents were kidsnot swimming, but were discovered in the water and that 77% of victims were out of sight for less than five minutes.
This led Nicole to conclude that supervision is the most effective and cheapest way to prevent drowning. So she created a “water guardian” tag that hangs from a lanyard to be worn by the adult on call to supervise the little ones. It can be worn while kids are swimming and also when there’s access to water, like on vacation at a lake or beach house, where there’s a lot going on and as she points out, “there’s the assumption that someone else is watching.”
"It is easy to ask a spouse or other caretaker, 'Hey, can you watch the kids for a minute?'" Nicole explains. "But, it is not enough. Parents, especially of small children, are easily distracted, so a tangible reminder, an effective 'tagging' of who is supervising is simple but powerful."
Nicole reminds us that a parent’s world can be shattered in the time it takes to grab a pair of goggles or answer the phone. Her $10 waterproof “water guardian” tag has already been endorsed by the American Lifeguard Association as an initiative that can help save lives.