Screen Shot 2014-05-22 at 12.12.45 AMI used to be ashamed that I never learned how to swim despite growing up surrounded by a bay and an ocean. But it turns out only 56 percent of Americans know basic water-safety skills, according to a recent survey conducted on behalf of the American Red Cross.

Most Americans – 86 percent to be exact – think they are more skilled than they really are. Forty-six percent of those surveyed say they’ve experienced a near-drowning situation. Nearly 20 percent say they knew somebody who did drown.

On average, 10 people drown in the U.S. per day. As part of its new campaign to reduce the drowning rate in 50 cities by 50 percent during the next three to five years, the Red Cross plans to teach 50,000 people across 19 states how to swim properly.

“We’re asking every family to make sure that both adults and children can swim and that parents make water safety a priority this summer,” says Red Cross Centennial Initiative director Connie Harvey in a statement.

Sign me up.


Clutchettes and Gents, can you swim?

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