x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Toddler drowns in family pool

An Emarati boy has died after falling into a swimming pool at his home in Saman. The toddler was found by his uncle.

SHARJAH // A toddler has died after falling into a swimming pool at his home. He is the second child to drown after being left unsupervised next to a swimming pool in the past month, prompting authorities to warn parents to learn from the tragedies. The young Emirati boy, aged 18 months, was found floating in the pool at his home in Saman by his uncle on Tuesday evening and was rushed to Al Qassimia hospital.

Doctors worked for several hours to save his life, but he was pronounced dead later that evening. Sharjah police have warned parents with home swimming pools to never leave children unsupervised. This month, a girl, aged four and identified as AA, drowned in a residential swimming pool in Ras al Khaimah. Relatives told police that she had learnt to swim at an early age. She was alone in the pool when her older brothers heard her screaming for help. They pulled her from the pool and took her to Saqr hospital emergency centre, where she was admitted to intensive care but died later that day.

Dr Samir Abdullah Abdul Aziz, a consultant on child safety in RAK, said the Government should set up bodies to regulate the safety of residential pools. "We should also start reconsidering the design and making of swimming pools at home. All pools should be in an enclosure that could stop children from approaching it without the supervision of the adults," he said. Some people balked at installing additional fencing for residential pools, he added. "Everybody says, 'Well, it's expensive'. Well, what is the value of a life?

"Adequate supervision means not sitting poolside reading, socialising with guests, chatting on the phone, operating the grill or listening to music with a headset. Such distractions are deadly," said Dr Aziz. @Email:ykakande@thenational.ae