Ephrata Firefighters and SafeKids Grant County: Child Drowning Prevention
EPHRATA —The drowning death of a Moses Lake child on Tuesday is a reminder for all parents and caregivers of children to always be vigilant when protecting children around any water.
Drowning is the number two cause of accidental death for children ages 14 and under. For children ages five and under, close to 350 drown in residential swimming pools each year, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Overall, approximately 810 children have died each year from 2001 to 2005 due to accidental drownings, and on average, an estimated 3,600 children go to the emergency room after near-drowning incidents a year.
More than half of drownings among infants (under age 1) occur in bathtubs. Drownings in this age group also occur in toilets and buckets. More than half of drownings among children ages 1 to 4 are pool-related. Children ages 5 to 14 most often drown in open water sites.
Near-drownings have high case fatality rates. Fifteen percent of children admitted for near-drowning die in the hospital. As many as 20 percent of near-drowning survivors suffer severe, permanent neurological disability.
Children ages 4 and under have the highest drowning death rate (two to three times greater than other age groups) and account for 80 percent of home drownings. These drownings typically occur in swimming pools and bathtubs.
PREVENTION MEASURES — Ephrata Firefighters and SafeKids Grant County remind all parents and caregivers of children to follow these simple tips to prevent child drownings:
Never leave a child unsupervised in or around water in the home.
Empty all containers immediately after use and store out of reach.
Never leave a child unsupervised in or around a swimming pool, hot tub, bathtub, bucket of water or irrigation canal even for a moment.
Never rely on a life vest or swimming lessons to protect a child.
Learn CPR and keep a telephone and emergency numbers handy.