INDIANAPOLIS - State health officials want Indiana residents to consider their safety as they dive into fun in the water this summer.
The latest state mortality report from 2011 documents 81 deaths due to accidental drowning or submersion in Indiana. State Health Commissioner Dr. William VanNess says they're preventable.
Officials urge people to take precautions like never swimming alone, obeying swimming rules at pools and lakes, and keeping a life preserver or vest nearby.
Officials also urge people to stop the spread of illnesses by contamination by taking common-sense measures like good hygiene and frequent bathroom breaks. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says thousands of Americans become ill from germs in waterways or get injured when they go swimming.