You’d think running a university aquatics program for 25 years would make you want to retire for good, but Dr. Tom Griffiths, founder of State College, Pa.-based Aquatic Safety Research Group, remains as engaged in aquatic issues as he always has been.
Long vocal about the dangers of holding one’s breath underwater, he is finally seeing suitably aggressive warnings in lifeguard and pool operator training about the risks of shallow-water blackout. His latest cause: Encouraging young, nonswimming children to wear life jackets in pools to keep them
safe from drowning.
In addition, Griffiths’ “five-minute scanning strategy” has become an essential tool for lifeguards so they stay alert and attentive to swimmers and bathers in an organized way.