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Help with life jackets

 

Roger Lucas

Rotarians have connected with the Safe Kids program at both Crescent Bay and Spring Canyon boat launches in an effort to save lives in area waters.

The program is sponsored by Grant County Health District, the Grand Coulee Dam Rotary Club and the National Park Service.

The program provides life jackets at the two boat launches for people who plan water activity but don't have enough life jackets.

A sign explains it all at both launches, and life jackets are hanging on the sign for temporary use by those short of life jackets.

The life jackets come in three sizes -- adult, children, and infant.

In Grant County, drowning is the second leading cause of injury or death for children ages 1-17. Each year in Washington state, drowning accounts for an average of 24 deaths, 26 hospitalizations for near-drowning events, and about 110 visits to the emergency room for residents age 0-17.

Similar programs are occurring at a number of sites throughout the state.

Say you have someone join you at a boat launch just as you are ready to put your boat into the water, and you don't have a life vest for him or her. The local programs address that and furnish spare life jackets.

The idea is that you can borrow a life vest and then return it when you conclude your outing.

Rotarian President Bob Valen said last Thursday that the club would be happy to receive life jackets from people who have spares. Just hang them on the sign at either location.

The life jackets are Coast Guard approved and already being used. More are coming in, Valen stated.

The idea first came before Rotarians a year or so ago, but all the pieces came together to get started this year.

Grant County coordinator of the Safe Kids program is Theresa Fuller.

 

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