Test Your Child's Lifejacket Before You Go on the Water

Both the USCG and lifejacket manufacturers strongly recommend that you test your child's lifejacket by putting it on them and making them float in the water. Because children often panic when they fall into the water suddenly, this will help them learn what to expect.

While a lifejacket will keep a child afloat, it may not keep a struggling child face up. Violent movement can counteract a lifejacket's safety. Therefore, it is important to teach children how to wear a lifejacket and how to relax their arms and legs in the water.

Lifejackets are not babysitters. Even if a child wears a lifejacket when on or near the water, an adult must always be present. Inflatable toys and rafts should not be used in place of lifejackets.