Lake Michigan water safety suggestions — Bob Smuda |

On July 12, a child lost his life in Lake Michigan off the mouth of the Pike River. Over the years, the city has implemented a number of safety measures regarding Lake Michigan’s dangers, and I offer two suggestions for considerations that I believe would be effective, inexpensive, and fairly simple to put in place.

The first is to put notice of Lake Michigan’s currents and riptides on the City of Kenosha’s “Parks” webpage. Information about life saving “flip, float and follow” procedures to follow if caught offshore should be presented there or possibly through links to the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project website, the Kenosha YMCA’s Safety Around Water webpage, the Kenosha Visitor’s Bureau website or other appropriate sites.

Parents and educators are well aware of the role repetition plays in learning and memory, so a second suggestion is to have signs illustrating the dangers of Lake Michigan’s currents along with “flip, float and follow” survival techniques printed up as public service announcements and then posted along the interior roof of City of Kenosha public buses where ads are typically placed. One can be put toward the back of the bus and another toward the front in order to provide more complete exposure to the information to all bus passengers. Providing daily reminders of the dangerous currents and “flip, float and follow” survival techniques to all bus-riding school children, tourists and the general public each time they board a bus is worth the minor investment in printing and placing them in the buses.

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These suggestions will not change the dangers of Lake Michigan, but they may help make people aware of them and how to survive them.

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