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Mesa Boy Drowns in New Pool

3 other kids hospitalized in water-related cases

March 14, 2005

Christian Ivy, 4, died after being pulled from a fenced backyard pool in the 500 block of South Mountain Road in Mesa around 9 a.m.

In Christian's case, the pool was new and had just been filled Saturday night, said Lt. Paul Chagolla, a spokesman for the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.

Christian lived at the home with his grandmother and 6-year-old sister. When he disappeared, his grandmother and her boyfriend were watching television. They believed Christian was in his room, also watching television, Chagolla said.

Authorities are investigating how Christian got to the pool and how long he was submerged. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

In another case, a 3-year-old Phoenix boy was in fair condition at Phoenix Children's Hospital after his father resuscitated him. The boy, whose name was not released, was in the water for less than a minute. Several children were playing outside near the fenced pool at the home, in the 3100 block of West Wescott Drive.

Sisters Grace and Jewell Dano, ages 2 and 15 months, remained in critical condition at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center after being submerged in a pool at a relative's Maryvale home for more than 10 minutes on Wednesday. The pool had no fence. The death and accidents have reminded authorities again why they are working to put new rules in place.

A community water-safety task force has drafted a proposal to simplify the myriad local pool fence ordinances into one set of statewide regulations that would require home buyers and renters to provide the barrier, said Phoenix Assistant Fire Chief Bob Khan.

The Drowning Prevention Coalition of Central Arizona, composed of representatives from the Attorney General's Office, other government officials, real estate agents and pool builders could be ready next month to ask a state lawmaker to introduce the measure in the Legislature.

"If you're the one that brings a child into that environment, you're responsible for bringing a fence to that pool," Khan said.

The measure is modeled after municipal codes around the Valley and would require that homes with a child under 6 years old have a 5-foot, non-climbable fence with a self-latching gate.
Reproduced with permission from:
The Arizona Republic
By Emily Bittner and Holly Johnson
Copyright 2005 Arizona Republic

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