A young boy is in extremely critical condition after almost drowning in a pool in Irvine Wednesday.
The 5-year-old was unresponsive when he was found in the water by his father in the backyard of the family home in the 90 block of Canyon Creek at around 4:45 p.m, an Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) spokesman said.
An Irvine Police Department officer gave emergency resuscitation until paramedics arrived, who then started advanced life support systems. The child was then taken to Hoag Hospital in grave condition.
After his pulse was restored the boy was transferred to the Children's Hospital of Orange County in Orange. He is listed as being in extremely critical condition.
This was the 16th drowning call the OCFA has received this year, including four involving youngsters in the past four days. One of those children died, and the rest are currently in hospital.
"This is a trend that we need to stop now. It is not even summer and we have had four serious drowning calls involving children." OCFA Capt Steve Concialdi said. "Our hearts break for all of the families involved because for these children that was playtime. They wanted to go in the water and they didn't see the danger."
Capt. Concialdi added that in each of the cases there were no barriers around the pool or adult supervision. He said every home pool should be surrounded by a fence with a latching gate, and that people should learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation techniques for use in case of an emergency.
Concialdi said if a child doesn't know how to swim, they start to suck water in and panic, with no splashing or screaming to alert anyone.
There are three key things that officials say everyone can all do to stay safe when near a pool, the ABCs of water safety:
- Active supervision: Never leaving kids alone in the water.
- Barriers: Placing barriers or a fence around the pool, jacuzzi and spa.
- Classes: Making sure kids take swimming lessons, and adults learn how to perform CPR.