Swimming Safety

By WEEK Producer

July 5, 2014 Updated Jul 5, 2014 at 10:17 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- The Fourth of July weekend can mean plenty of pool-side "fun in the sun," but how safe are you're children when it comes to swimming?

The Department of Children and Family Services report that eight children have drowned in Illinois since June.

Nearly 90 drowning deaths are reported in the state every year.

The department is teaming up with the Illinois Association of Park Districts and the American Red Cross to combat the growing trend.

They say almost all drowning deaths are preventable.

"Even if a child knows how to swim, watch them in any body of water, regardless of how deep or shallow," says Nora Harms-Pevelski, DCFS State Central Register. "Stay with arms reach of a child when they are in water."

Organizers say it's just as important for parents to know how to swim.

Parents are encouraged to contact their local park districts for information on swimming lessons.