Environmental Health

Pool Safety

  • From 2005-2014, there were an average of 3,536 fatal unintentional drownings (non-boating related) annually in the United States — about ten deaths per day. An additional 332 people died each year from drowning in boating-related incidents.

  • About one in five people who die from drowning are children 14 and younger. For every child who dies from drowning, another five receive emergency department care for nonfatal submersion injuries.

  • More than 50% of drowning victims treated in emergency departments (EDs) require hospitalization or transfer for further care (compared with a hospitalization rate of about 6% for all unintentional injuries).These nonfatal drowning injuries can cause severe brain damage that may result in long-term disabilities such as memory problems, learning disabilities, and permanent loss of basic functioning (e.g., permanent vegetative state).

Read more on CDC Unintentional Drowning: Get the Facts


Prevention Tips

  • Swimming skills help. Taking part in formal swimming lessons reduces the risk of drowning among children aged 1 to 4 years.
  • Learn Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
  • Life jackets can reduce risk
  • Supervise When in or Around Water
  • Use the Buddy System

Read more on CDC Unintentional Drowning: Prevention


Pool Safety for Parents

Public Recreational Bathing Project


Last Reviewed: 6/1/2021