As Pools Open for Summer, Young Children Face Drowning Risks (Transcript)

March 05, 2013

Press Release # 06-164




TEXT: CPSC Drowning Prevention VNR

(View of child climbing over the side of an inflatable pool into the water).

TEXT: This material is sponsored by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and is for your free and unrestricted use.
More information:Mark Ross, CPSC, 301-504-7800
See CPSC's complete drowning prevention release at

TEXT: The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reports there are about 280 drowning deaths of children younger than 5 each year in swimming pools. An estimated 2,100 children were treated in hospital emergency rooms for pool-related submersion injuries in 2005.

TEXT: More of these drownings are happening in inexpensive, inflatable pools. CPSC has reports of 17 drowning deaths in these pools in 2005, up from nine in 2004 and 10 in 2003.

TEXT: Larger inflatable pools can be up to 4-feet deep and 18-feet across. Large pools can cost just a few hundred dollars. These pools often fall outside of local building codes that require barriers. Consumers may purchase these pools without considering the barriers necessary to protect young children.

TEXT: The sides of inflatable pools are flexible and sometimes slanted or low, so young children may be able to climb inside more easily.

Chairman Hal Stratton
U.S. consumer Product Safety Commission
(Spanish version of soundbites are at the end of the tape.)

(View of Chairman Hal Stratton).

Chairman Stratton: "Inexpensive, inflatable pools are rising in popularity. Parents need to understand any pool poses a drowning risk and must consider the danger of water before investing in an inflatable pool."
"Each year about 280 children drown in swimming pools and we’re seeing an increasing number of incidents in inflatable pools. Theses pools are shallow and the sides are flexible, giving young children easy access."
"Drownings can happen quickly and quietly. Often there is no splashing or screaming. So whenever a child is missing, always look in the pool first because every second counts."

Inflatable Pool with Pool Cover
Children Accessing Pool with Cover

(View of yard with covered inflatable pool. Children run to it and peek underneath the cover. The children play with attached strings, run around, tuck their heads under the cover, and then reach for beach balls that are sitting at the center of the pool).

Young child Climbing over Side of Inflatable Pool

(View of young child climbing over the side of an inflatable pool to get into the water).

(View of other young children climbing into the pool via ladder and by climbing over the edge. They play and talk while they are climbing).

Consumers may purchase inflatable pools without condisdering barriers.

(View of inflatable pool in a yard with no barrier around it. Second view of inflatable pool with no barrier. View of children running across the yard and jumping into the inflatable pool).


(View of children playing in and near inflatable pool).

Set-up of 13-foot wide Inflatable Pool that holds 33-inches of water.

(View of empty inflatable pool outside. Two adults work to set it up and fill it using a hose. They check the tubes running to the pool, and once it is full, place a ladder so that it straddles the pool and children can access it safely and easily).

(View of pool set up and full in a yard. Close-up view of pump going into the inflatable pool. View of the surface of the pool with no children in it).

TEXT: To prevent young children from drowning in backyard pools, CPSC recommends: constant supervision of young children; placing barriers such as a power safety cover and fences with a self-closing, self-latching gate around your pool to prevent access; having rescue equipment and a phone near the pool; and learning cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

(View of in-ground backyard pool. View of fence surrounding the section of the yard that the pool is in. View of woman opening gate and walking through it to get to the pool area. View of cover being rolled over the pool and snapping shut. view of woman walking down the stairs leading away from an above-ground backyard pool, and then lifting the stairs out of reach, flush with the rest of the fence, so that the pool cannot be accessed).

TEXT: Close supervision of young children is vital for families with a pool. All children should be supervised every second while in and around the pool.

(View of children and adults playing in a backyard pool. View of a young boy running to a backyard pool with no one in it, and reaching for a beach ball that is just out of his reach. View of two young children playing with pool noodles right next to the water. A woman runs up behind them and tells them not to play that close to the pool while she pulls them away).

Hal Stratton Presidente Comision para la Seguridad de los Productos de Consumo de los Estados Unidos

(View of Chairman Stratton).

Chairman Stratton: "Por ser económicas, la popularidad de las piscinas inflables está aumentando. Los padres deben comprender que toda piscina encierra peligro de ahogamiento y deben considerar los peligros del agua antes de invertir en una piscina inflable."
"Cada año, unos 280 niños se ahogan en piscinas y vemos que la cantidad de incidentes aumenta en el caso de las piscinas inflables. Estas piscinas son poco profundas y los lados son flexibles lo que facilita el acceso a los niños pequeños."
El ahogamiento puede producirse rápidamente y en forma silenciosa. A menudo, no se siente el chapoteo ni los gritos. Por eso, siempre que se pierde un niño busque primero en la piscina porque cada segundo es valioso."

TEXT: CPSC offers free publications and information for consumers to help prevent drowning:
For more information, go to, or call our Hotline at (800) 638-2772