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Glendale toddler is first child drowning this year

May 8, 2008

As temperatures rise so does chance of drownings with many turning to water for relief.

That's why the Glendale Fire Department is hosting a water safety event at 10 a.m. May 24 at Rose Lane Aquatic Center. The free session will feature a mock drowning and several vendors who will be supplying a variety of water-safety information.

"It's to raise awareness of how serious these incidents are," Glendale Fire Department spokesman Daniel Valenzuela said.

Glendale experienced the first child drowning of 2008 in Maricopa County on Wednesday when a toddler died after wandering from inside a home and into a pool.

The 15-month-old boy was discovered by his mother floating in the backyard pool of their home near 43rd and Olive avenues at around noon, Valenzuela said.

The child was not breathing when fire crews arrived, Valenzuela said, and they administered CPR before he was transported to St. Joseph's Hospital.

"The baby was definitely fighting for his life en route to the hospital," Valenzuela said.

The boy's 22-year-old mother told authorities she was sleeping inside the house with her son, who only recently had begun to walk, but that when she woke, he was not near her.

She, along with her 16-year-old brother, who Glendale police officer Matt Barnett said was also sleeping, began searching the residence until finding the toddler in the water.

The pool was not surrounded by a fence, Valenzuela said.

How the child reached the back yard is unclear, Barnett said, but will be investigated by police.

Reproduced with permission from:
The Arizona Republic
Christopher Ramirez
Copyright 2008 Arizona Republic

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