A 2-year-old boy died after squeezing through a safety gate and falling into his family’s swimming pool in Florida.
The heartbreaking incident took place on May 7, when the child’s parents left him unattended during dinner – according to the Cape Coral Police Department.
The parents informed investigators that the toddler had asked to go swimming, but they instructed him to wait until he had finished his food and left the room.
When one parent returned – they discovered that the boy was missing from the table and a sliding glass door leading to the pool area had been opened.
The parent then saw the boy lying facedown in the pool and pulled him out of the water to perform CPR — the child was found with some of his dinner still in his mouth.
The toddler was then taken to a local hospital, where he died four days later.
Investigators reveal that a pool gate was installed but the child was able to pull a section of it apart and slip through.
The boy reportedly did not know how to swim.
From 2015 through 2017, there has been an average of 379 pool-related drownings per year involving children younger than 15 years old, according to data compiled by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
Drowning is one of the top causes of unintentional deaths for children in the U.S. according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). They recommend preventing such tragedies by always have someone supervising.
“Designate a responsible adult to watch young children while in the bath and all children swimming or playing in or around water. Supervisors of preschool children should provide ‘touch supervision,’ be close enough to reach the child at all times. Because drowning occurs quickly and quietly, adults should not be involved in any other distracting activity (such as reading, playing cards, talking on the phone, or mowing the lawn) while supervising children, even if lifeguards are present.”
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.
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