Snohomish County water safety camps teach kids life-saving skills

SNOHOMISH COUNTY, Wash. — Drowning is the number one cause of death for small children but drowning affects every age group. Just yesterday, a woman in her early 50s drowned in the Snoqualmie River when she and her paddleboard became entangled in a snag of fallen trees.

The summer water safety camps in Snohomish County teach kids skills to save lives in the water.

Rescuers told us more children and teens drown in lakes, rivers, and oceans every year than in swimming pools. At the camp, kids learn safety skills hands-on, in open water.

They rotate through four hands-on stations in and out of the water with experts from Snohomish Regional Fire and Rescue, Lake Stevens Police Department, and Monroe Police Department. They also learn a lot about fitting life jackets.

One of the biggest skills rescuers teach kids is to learn not to panic if you are in trouble in the water. They show them how to slow things down and use their natural buoyancy to rescue themselves.

King County Dive and Rescue teams told us the woman who drowned yesterday on the paddleboard was not wearing a life jacket.

The camps are so popular, more are being added.