5 Children Treated for Bath Drowning at Cook Children’s In 1 Month
7 tips to protect your child in the tub
In a little over a month, five children have been rushed to Cook Children’s after being left alone in a bathtub,with one incident resulting in death. The first drowning happened on March 14, 2018 and the latest occurred last week.
The experts at Cook Children’s have a simple, but direct message: “Don’t leave your child alone in the bathtub.”
“When talking to parents about bathtub safety, I like to stress ‘touch supervision’ in infants and young children.” said Corwin Warmink, medical director of Emergency Services at Cook Children’s. “This means you are close enough to reach your child at all times versus just watching them from a distance. A drowning happens quickly and silently. A baby can slip under the water and parents may not even realize it, if they aren’t right there with the baby.”
Some experts disagree on when a child can be left to bathe alone. Dr. Warmink says the general rule is around school age, but it really depends on the child and his or her maturity level.
Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional injury-related death in children ages 1 to 4 years old and the second leading cause of unintentional injury related death for ages 1 to 14.
“Safety begins in the home,” said Dana Walraven, manager of Community Health Outreach at Cook Children's. “Bath time is not only a good time to bond with your baby, but it can be a dangerous time in and around water. Support safe habits with adult, not sibling, supervision.”
- Never leave your child unattended in the water.
- Put the cell phone away. Give your child 100 percent of your attention.
- If you have to answer the door or the phone, take your baby out of the water and hold him or her while you do so.
- Once the bath is over, immediately drain the tub.
- Store empty tubs, buckets, containers and wading pools away after use. Store them upside down and out of a child’s reach.
- Keep doors to bathrooms and laundry rooms closed.
- Learn CPR.
Learn more about water safety at home: