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2-Year-Old Girl Slips Out of 'Water Wings' in Near Drowning

Officials also warn against using 'water wings' because it is too easy for children to slip out of them.

Getty Images
Getty Images

A 2-year-old girl who slipped out of her "water wings" and ended up on the bottom of a Ladera Ranch swimming pool Tuesday was being treated at Mission Hospital.

It happened about 10 a.m. in a private backyard pool near Foliate Way and Fallow Lane, Capt. Steve Concialdi of the Orange County Fire Authority said.

The girl was taken to the hospital in moderate to serious condition, he said.

"It just takes a few seconds ... for what can be a lifetime of regret," Concialdi said, noting that the county has logged 20 such accidents so far this year, eight of them fatal.

The girl and her mother were with a 3-year-old boy and her mother.

While the four were waiting for a swimming instructor to arrive, the girl slipped out of some "water wings" -- inflatable tubes that slip over arms -- and fell or jumped into the water without the mothers noticing.

The 3-year-old boy alerted the women that "she's on the bottom of the pool," Concialdi said.

One of the women dived in and rescued the girl, who initially was unconscious but started breathing again, he said.

Concialdi said the OCFA discourages the use of "water wings," because they are too easy for little children to slip out of — accidentally or intentionally.

The girl would be admitted to the hospital and monitored for secondary or "dry" drowning, he said. When water or any foreign substance gets into lungs, the body produces a mass of mucous to help expel it, he said.

Near-drownings also can cause brain damage due to oxygen deprivation, but Concialdi said there were no hard and fast limits on how long a person could be deprived of oxygen and not suffer brain damage.

"It can be just seconds," he said. "With a child, they're panicking. They're inhaling water the whole time."

He recommended keeping children 3 and younger at "arm's length" around water.

An adult and a child hospitalized in near-drownings last week were reported in grave condition, he said.

— City News Service

Arianna June 11, 2014 at 02:36 PM
Attention parents!! Don't ever leave your child unattended by the POOL!!!!!!!!!!
Bella June 11, 2014 at 03:59 PM
Start arresting the parents. This is ridiculous. I'm beginning to think these "accidents" are intentional.
Andrew June 12, 2014 at 01:25 AM
You are an idiot
The Beast ! June 14, 2014 at 10:30 PM
Always have a person who assumes the responsibility of being the lifeguard when you have kids over. Never wear water wings full life vest or no swimming in our pool. And parent you all need to get CPR trained before having kids.........SMH !
Sam Mamola June 17, 2014 at 03:48 PM
You need the wings that have a floatation across the front too, and buckle in the back. Be careful with life vests, sometimes they can put a child face down if they can't balance.

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