Three toddlers drown in Limpopo swimming pool

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Three toddlers tragically drown in public pool in Limpopo

The three toddlers allegedly gained access to the local swimming pool unnoticed.

Three toddlers drown in Limpopo swimming pool

Image via Adobe Stock

Limpopo police are investigating an incident where three toddlers aged between three and four tragically drowned in a local swimming pool at Tshituni Tsha Fhasi Village in Makhado on Friday 31 January 2020 at 17:15.

According to a South African Police Service (SAPS) statement, it is alleged that the three toddlers, three-year-old Mashudu Angel Langanani, four-year-old Ramovha Vhutali, and four-year-old Shandukani Never, who lived on the same street near the pool, were playing when they wandered off and gained entrance to the premises unnoticed.

Three toddlers found floating

After they wandered off, the brother of one of the toddlers went on a search for them and made his way to the local swimming pool.

“The elder brother of one of the children got frightened when he could not see them and decided to trace them,” said Limpopo SAPS Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo.

He then made the horrific discovery of the three children unconsciously floating in the swimming pool. He immediately alerted his mother who reacted swiftly.

The children were rushed to the local clinic. They were all unfortunately certified dead on arrival. The police have opened cases of an inquest and the investigations into the matter are continuing.

Children most at risk of drowning 

Research in the United States ranked drowning as the second-leading cause of unintentional death for children, aged one to 14. Children less than a year old are most likely to drown in bathtubs, buckets, or toilets. Children aged one to four are most likely to drown in residential swimming pools. Children need to be monitored at all times no matter the size of the pool or location where they encounter water.

Anyone can have a water-related accident and be at risk of drowning — even children who know how to swim. It is not only small children who are at risk. Males are much more likely to become victims of drowning. Risk-taking, overconfidence in swimming ability and alcohol use may play a significant role in water deaths by drowning.

Safety at swimming pools 

According to Arrive Alive, these are the best tips for safety at a swimming pool as most incidents of drowning occur at our residential swimming pools. 

  • We need to supervise as actively as possible. Whenever infants or toddlers are in or around water, an adult should be within arm’s reach to provide active supervision;
  • Parents should avoid distractions when children are near water and give them their undivided attention;
  • Even strong swimmers need adult supervision. Insist on life jackets for children who can’t swim;
  • Parents should not only supervise but also advise on safety in and around the pool;
  • Running on slippery surfaces is dangerous for everyone around.  Someone could fall into the pool, accidentally push a smaller child towards water or hit the slick pool deck causing injury;
  • Stay away from drains, filters and water intakes. Loose hair or clothing can get tangled in these structures – possibly trapping a child under the water;
  • Teach children to swim. Most children can learn to swim at about age five – but know that swimming lessons won’t necessarily prevent a child from drowning;
  • Don’t leave pool toys in the water. A child may fall into the water while trying to retrieve a toy.