Western Australia will kick off a new safety campaign after a toddler’s tragic drowning triggered an investigation.
Western Australia is ramping up its water safety messaging after a toddler tragically drowned in his family’s backyard pool.
The three-year-old boy drowned at his home in the south Perth suburb of Greenfields on Thursday.
WA Police are investigating the boy’s death and looking into the backyard pool.
The local council, the City of Mandurah, is responsible for checking pool boundaries and fences.
However, photos obtained by 7 News showed the pool was not tightly enclosed in 2017.
The real estate photos showed the pool was not accessible from the house and had a small gate to access the water.
In a tragic twist, the family reported the toddler missing to police after the mother couldn’t locate him.
He was found in the pool a short time later.
A St John Ambulance confirmed paramedics were called to the home just after 2pm to try and resuscitate the boy.
“It’s so important that parents’ first port of call is to check the water bodies around the home – a bathtub or a swimming pool,” a Royal Life Saving spokesperson said.
“Timing is really imperative, and minutes can make the difference.”
Royal Life Saving Australia’s national drowning report for 2020-2021 recorded 25 children under four drowning.
The 25 deaths were an increase from the 2019-2020 period when 23 children died.
On average, three children die from drowning in Western Australia each year.
The tragic spike in drownings triggered a new push for water safety with the Kids Alive Do The Five group launching another campaign.
The renewed campaign features Olympic gold medallist Cathy Freeman and comedian Dave Hughes who speak about the potential dangers of water.
The surge in drownings over the past two years has been linked to the coronavirus pandemic, with public pools closing and swimming lessons put on hold for children.
Swimming guidelines have also changed for children to ensure a consistent approach across Australia.
By the age of six, all children should be able to swim five metres and be able to float by themselves.