New data tabulated by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)’s Pool Safelycampaign based on media reports compiled by USA Swimming Foundation shows a 20 percent increase in the percentage of fatal child pool and spa drownings that took place in a home pool in 2020 compared to 2019. At least 88 percent of the 136 media reported total fatal child drownings in 2020 took place in a residential pool, compared to 67 percent in 2019.
This data underscores the ongoing need for water safety vigilance during the winter months, particularly as families continue to spend more time at home amid COVID-19. It only takes a short period of time for a child to slip outdoors unnoticed, even during non-swimming times, or when parents and caregivers are nearby.
The 2020 data also shows a nearly 20 percent increase in the percentage of fatal drownings reported in children younger than five years old compared to 2019. Texas led the nation with the highest number of media-reported fatal child drownings in pools and spas in 2020 (20 drownings), followed by Arizona (15 drownings), Florida (13 drownings), California (9 drownings), Ohio (9 drownings) and Pennsylvania (9 drownings).
To help reverse these trends, Pool Safely is urging families to renew their commitment to water safety all year in 2021 by following the below simple steps to save lives.