Valley child event shows importance of water safety, other potential hazards

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The number one cause of injury to kids under 14 is something we can prevent. Emergency responders in the Valley are hoping to teach that lesson to the youngest of learners.

So far this year nearly two dozen kids have had some sort of water related injury. Officials are hoping to keep that number from increasing by teaching kids some lifesaving lessons.

Mary Jo Quintero chose to teach those lessons using ice and water. It's a lesson she's hoping will stick. So far it's already got 6-year-old James thinking. He said, "Don't swim in them, or else if you go really deep down you're not gonna go back up."

For Quintero these lessons are personal. It all comes back to Barrett Smades Forrest, who was permanently affected by a near drowning in a backyard pool in 1987. She said, "I got to be friends with the mom and I got to hear about how this little boy was such a delight to their family, and with a drowning, no oxygen event that little boy is not going to ever be there again."

Quintero felt she had to do something. She created the "May Day May Day Have a Safe and Healthy Summer" event -- one which features water safety and other examples of things that could be dangerous to children.

From gun safety to CPR, it's life lessons that Sanger Unified teacher Kristen Noorigian feels her students need to know. She said, "Learning different activities, whether it's at home or how to call 911, different medicine, whether its medicine or candy so they can know exactly what kind of medicine to take and practice safety."

Affecting change and making a difference one child at a time. This year was the event's largest, with more than 3,000 kids attending from school districts around the Valley.

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