by Rob Cox, September 12, 2010
2010 Pool Drowning Statistics
Every year, the CPSC releases the data collected on the drowning and near drowning incidents in pools and spas collected during the year, between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Of course, many drownings occur outside of June, July and August, however this data samples the period of largest use of water recreation, during the summer months.
Sadly, we can't expect to have a non-existent drowning rate, but this year, 2010 did see a reduction in US drownings of children during the summer. The average number of children lost is close to 200 per season. This year was lower at 172 children (under the age of 15) drowning between May 31 and September 6th.
Fewer swimming pool drownings in 2010 is little consolation for the families of 172 children lost this year. There still is a long way to go, with education and resources to continue to reduce the tragedies that bring such a black cloud over our industry. Most states made improvements in their numbers, the states with the largest numbers of incidents of pool drownings and pool near drownings this year are listed below. Over 180 non-fatal incidents occurred at our nation's pools and spas this summer.
Several high profile drownings occurred this year. In July, the young son of former NFL Quarterback Randall Cunningham drowned in the household spa, sunk into the floor and unprotected by a safe spa cover. Also this summer, 6 siblings drowned in the Red River. Cooling off on a hot summer day, but having never been taught to swim properly, a current pulled them all under.
Countless more stories are found online. And not only young children, although the age with the most vulnerability is the under-5 crowd, perform a Google search for "2010 pool drownings 12 year old", and you will be very surprised. Older kids who don't know how to swim may be at an even greater danger than very young children.
The CPSC would like you to know that the danger of drownings extend beyond swimming pools, and beyond the pool season. Check this link for information on Home Drowning Dangers. “Back to school does not mean the end of the swimming season. Many children in warm weather states have fun in the water all year,” said Inez Tenenbaum, CPSC Chairman.