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Drownings Claim Too Many Lives This Year

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Posted on August 12, 2013

Fort Walton Beach teen drowns in pool accident

Alex Hill, a Choctawhatchee High School student, died on Aug. 7 following an apparent drowning. Witnesses told investigators the 16-year-old boy was last seen on a raft in the deep end of a pool.

Hill, of Fort Walton Beach, was at a pool party with friends when someone noticed him motionless at the bottom of the pool. Friends initially thought it was a prank but when they went down and nudged him they soon realized it was not. Based on cut doctors saw on his temple, witness statements and evidence at the scene, it’s believed he hit his head on the side of the pool. He was set to begin his junior year and he played percussion in the band, Principal Cindy Gates told the Northwest Florida Daily News.

Phoenix toddler drowns in pool

A toddler pulled from his family’s unfenced backyard pool on Sunday, Aug. 4 was pronounced dead at a local hospital, police said in a Phoenix Arizona Local News report.

The family had lost track of him when he entered the pool, officials said. The yard was fenced, but there was no secondary fence around the pool, Phoenix Fire Capt. Tony Mure said. The father initiated CPR, which fire officials continued as they transported the boy, who was nearly 2, to an area hospital.

Mure said this is the 40th call for a water-related incident that the Fire Department has received this year; June, July and August being their busiest months.

Drowning Prevention

Drowning can be “a silent catastrophe,” that can happen in the few minutes you take to answer a phone call or run inside for a towel. It’s important we take steps to secure our pools and protect our children.

The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Safety Act was enacted by Congress and signed by President Bush on Dec. 19, 2007. The federal legislation, which became effective on Dec. 19, 2008, encourages the use of layers of protection. This term refer to safety barriers that like an onion come in multiple layers:

  • The first layer is supervision, meaning someone is always watching young children in the water.
  • The second is barrier protection such as a fence or gate and alarm system at the point of entry.
  • The third layer is emergency preparedness. Everyone should know CPR, including child CPR, and have easy access to a phone to call 911.

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