NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) — Fun in the sun also means fun by the pool, but sometimes that can be dangerous.

As CBS 2’s Sonia Rincon reported, even those who do know how to swim could be at risk in the water.

If you are planning on spending time in the water over the summer you will definitely want to know how to get out of the water alive, and most people need to brush up on the basics, according to a recent Red Cross survey.

“We found that 56 percent of people who responded to the survey nationwide did not have the appropriate skills to be able to stay alive in the water even though they said they could swim,” Regional Red Cross CEO, Josh Lockwood, explained.

Lockwood told CBS 2’s Rincon that there are five essential skills that every swimmer should have.

You need to be able to get to the surface easily if you are in over your head, you need to be able to tread water for a full minute, you need to know how to swim in a quick circle so you can find a way out of the water, you need to be able to swim 25 yards, and be able to get out of the water without a ladder.

Red Cross data shows that drowning is the second leading cause of death in children between the ages of 2 and 14. In the New York area the majority of deaths happen in swimming pools.

These skills may require some practice and with pools and lakes opening up for the summer, now is a good time to start.

The Red Cross also said that children should never be in the water unattended and that everyone should take an age appropriate orientation and learn-to-swim course.

You May Also Be Interested In These Stories

Watch & Listen LIVE