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Bode and Morgan Miller Speak Out About Child Drownings

How can I ensure my child stays safe while around the water?

Olympic skiing champion Bode Miller and his wife Morgan recently suffered the tragic loss of their 19-month-old daughter in a drowning accident. Now, they are stepping out to educate the public on one of the top causes of accidental childhood deaths—drowning. Our Georgia premises liability lawyers discuss the Miller’s story and how it illustrates just how quickly a child can drown, as well as steps you can take to keep your child safe around the water.

Remembering Emmy Miller

The Millers were at a neighbor’s home when 19-month-old Emmy slipped away. Tragically, Emmy was found floating in the neighbor’s pool. Morgan pulled Emmy out and administered CPR, but the little girl sadly passed away.

The Millers’ story is unfortunately replayed across America every day. Drowning is the second leading cause of death, behind only birth defects, for children under the age of four. A young child can lose consciousness in the water in as little as two minutes. Permanent brain damage and death can result in just four minutes.

What many parents also do not realize is that drowning can be silent. Drowning, especially in young children, does not necessarily involve cries for help or flailing limbs. Rather, young children may simply slip below the surface of the water and silently drown. This makes it all the more important for parents to be on guard any time their child is near a water source.

Preventing Drowning Accidents

Young children can drown in pools, hot tubs, or even just the bathtub. One of the Millers’ main message to the public is that drowning can happen even when you are not by the pool. If there is any sort of water in the area, such as a neighbor’s pool or your pool even when you are inside, there is the potential for your child to find a way into the water. Children are curious and resourceful, and even attentive parents can lose track of a child for a time.

Parents with pools in their home can protect their children by installing a pool alarm and always making sure all doors that could access the pool are locked by locks a child cannot reach. Consider placing your young child in survival swimming courses, which teach children as young as a few months to swim. Have your child wear a life vest at all times when near a body of water and always keep a close eye on your child, even if lifeguards are present. If your neighbors have pools or you live near a pond, securing your home will be critically important for the safety of your young child.

Posted in: Premises Liability