ALBANY, N.Y. -- In the last month more than half a dozen
people have been involved in drowning's or near drowning's in the Capital
Region, and lifeguards say being aware of the danger that lurks just below the
surface of the water can be lifesaving.
A day at the beach turned chaotic for Cheryl Hardcastle
when she saw a child disappear from sight.
"A raft actually floated over the top of one of the
smaller kids," she said.
But over 20 years of lifeguard training kicked in, and
she pulled the child out from under the raft, taking the child to safety.
Hardcastle tells NEWS10 that parents need to pay
attention to their children, because trouble can start quickly – less than the amount
of time it takes to run inside an answer the phone.
She explained that kids will usually struggle for 20 to
60 seconds before submerging, but Hardcastle says noticing someone is drowning
can be tough for the untrained eye.
"It's not like it is on TV when you see the people
flailing all over the place," she said. "A lot of times when people are in
trouble, people don't call out for help."
Hardcastle says someone struggling to swim will be swimming
in a ventricle position -- arms extended to the side and pushing down.
"And their face is usually just at the surface or just
below the surface, they're struggling to breathe," she said.
That's why she said supervision is key to preventing a
tragedy. Hardcastle says since she's been with the Glenville YMCA they have not
had drowning incidents. She credits the
good record with paying close attention to swimmers as well as teaching kids
how to swim.
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