The U. S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that accidental drowning (not due to boating accidents) is the 5th most-common cause of unintentional injury death in the United States, with an estimated average of 10 deaths per day. Since this estimate is based on data accumulated during the years 2005 - 2014, it may not accurately reflect the results of more recent trends in water safety.
In this summary, the drowning and aquatic accident lawyers at The Doan Law Firm presents our first summary of publicly-available data concerning accidental drowning deaths that were reported in the United States during January 2019.
Summary of the Drownings
We were able to locate news items that mentioned 41 drowning deaths that occurred during the month of January. Statistically, these deaths revealed that:
- 85% of drowning victims were males (n = 35) and 14% were females (n = 6)
- The median age of the 29 male victims was 43 (range 3 - 94, age unknown in 2 victims). The median age for females was not calculated due to the relatively small number of female drowning victims reported. For an explanation of why we use the median age rather than the average or mean age, see this link.
- Seven victims were less than 12 years old, and all but one of the deaths in this age group occurred in either the family swimming pool or in water that was immediately adjacent to the victim's home.
Six states accounted for 59% (24 / 41) of all drowning deaths:
- Texas (8)
- Florida (7)
- Hawaii (3)
- Alabama (2)
- Nevada (2)
- Washington (2)
- 83% of drowning deaths occurred in "open water" (e.g. lakes, ponds, rivers).
Conclusions from the Drowning Accidents
Since our summary is from a single month, and that month was notable for its unusually harsh winter weather, we are reluctant to identify any trends but instead comment on what our results "suggest":
The victims in our reported cases were overwhelmingly male. This seems to confirm data from previous studies suggesting that males account for about 80% of U. S. drowning victims.
The number of victims under the age of 12 was slightly lower than the 20% noted in other studies. We feel that this is due to the winter season and will approach that of previously-reported drowning studies as we accumulate more data.
We were unable to locate a reliable, previously-reported, median age for "adult" male drowning victims. We do suspect that our median age of 43 is probably higher than would be expected but feel that this is due to seasonal factors and that median age will probably decrease as more data becomes available.
We did not attempt to record instances of near-drowning accidents due to the lack of follow-up data regarding the long-term consequences of such accidents.
Contacting a drowning accident lawyer
As we all know, accidents are preventable! This is particularly true in drowning accidents, where the negligence of someone other than the victim can be identified as either causing the accident or making the consequences of an accident worse than they should have been.
For these reasons, and others, we suggest that the families of drowning and near-drowning accident victims should contact an experienced drowning accident lawyer to discuss the circumstances of their family member's accident and to review the legal options that may be available to them. One such lawyer is the drowning and aquatic accident lawyer at The Doan Law Firm, a national personal injury law practice with offices located in major cities across the country.
You can contact our office at any time to arrange a free, no obligation, review of the facts in your drowning accident injury case. By "free" and "no obligation," we mean that it will cost you nothing to talk with our drowning accident staff and that your consultation and case review will remain free regardless of any decision you make regarding a future lawsuit. Should you decide to file a lawsuit and that you would like for our firm to represent you in court, we are willing to assume full responsibility for all aspects of your lawsuit in exchange for an agreed-upon percentage of the final settlement that we will win for you.