The childhood ritual of skipping rocks on a lake ended in an unmitigated tragedy Saturday (May 15, 2021) when a pair of cousins died in a Massachusetts drowning accident. The untimely death of these two adolescents underscores the need for proper swimmers’ education.
The boys, ages 12 and 13, were standing in shallow water at Waldo Lake, a recreational spot located in D.W. Field Park in Brockton, Massachusetts. As mentioned, the boys were skipping rocks across the water and one of them fell into a steep drop off. The boy that fell into deeper water did not know now to swim.
The boy’s cousin immediately attempted to rescue the drowning youth. Unfortunately, he did not know how to swim wither.
There were family members and other individuals at the scene of the accident. A number of people attempted to rescue the drowning cousins, to no avail.
Brockton Police were the first rescue personnel at the scene. Upon their arrival, they attempted to find the boys in the water. They were unsuccessful in doing so.
The Plymouth County Technical Rescue Team found the body of the older cousin at about 9:00 Saturday night. Divers found the remains of the 12-year-old boy about a half an hour later. They were both transported to an area hospital where they were pronounced dead.
A third boy, age 11 and related to the drowning victims, also experienced problems in the water. He was related to the pair of deceased cousins. He evidently had not undertaken any swimmers’ training. He was rescued by a relative. There is no information about the third boy sustaining any injuries as a result of the drowning accident.
An investigation is ongoing at this time to glean any additional information about the drowning deaths. Some questions that are yet unanswered but are likely to be explored during the course of the drowning accident investigation include:
Determining whether or not the sharp drop off that one of the boys fell into was marked properly. Typically, water hazards such as an otherwise unexpected sharp drop off in water at a lake or similar location are marked to give people in the water a proverbial heads up.
- Ascertaining whether there have been previous instances of this type of accident at the location in question, including incidents that have resulted in the injury or death of people recreating at the lake.
- The family who had gathered at the lake do appear to have “checked-off” a number of important child swimming safety requirements. For example, it does appear that an adult or adults were paying attention to the boys in the water. There is no indication that adults at the scene failed to respond to the emergency situation themselves in a reasonably timely manner.
- The boys had not ventured far from the shore and had been playing in shallow water until the moment one of the children unexpectedly fell into the drop off. With that said, people need to always bear in mind that deep water is not required for a person to drown or suffer some other type of aquatic accident.
A glaring shortcoming is found in the fact that the trio of boys did not know how to swim. If a young person is going to engage in recreational activities in or around water, that child needs to have at least a basic swimmer’s education. Experts maintain that a child effectively can be taught to swim beginning at about the age of five. Moreover, even young children appear capable of absorbing some basic points about swimming which might prove handy if they find themselves in an emergency situation.
If you’ve lost a child in a drowning accident, or if you or a member of your family have been injured in such an incident, The Doan Law Firm at (800) 349-0000 is here for you. The head of the firm, Jimmy Doan, is recognized nationally in cases involving death or injury by drowning as well as in other types of aquatic accidents.
A nationwide law firm, an initial consultation with a drowning accident lawyer can be scheduled at any one of our 40 offices, at your home, or online. There is never a charge for an initial consultation with a drowning accident lawyer.
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