You are here

The Preventable Adult Drowning Epidemic: A Call to Action with a Focus on Adult Drowning & Actions to Decrease Drowning Incidents

The Preventable Adult Drowning Epidemic: A Call to Action with a Focus on Adult Drowning & Actions to Decrease Drowning Incidents
Speaker(s): 
Thursday, October 17, 2019
10:00 am–10:50 am
Increasing Fun and Reducing Risk Track

According to the World Health Organization (2014), drowning is a leading global killer for teens and young adults (15-24). Water safety and swimming programs should be developed for teens and adults as a proactive approach to minimize the number of overall drownings. Civilian population statistics show that young adult drownings are mostly male, and the CDC reports that about 80 percent of drowning victims are 15 or older. Teens and young adults tend to drown in natural bodies of water. Two high risk factors include neck fractures caused by diving into shallow water and alcohol (CDC, 2014).

It is necessary to assess how swimming abilities are influenced by mindset and culture. When evaluating the USMC population, a proactive program shows that adult drownings are minimal. The Marine Corps has 46 swimming pools and 17 miles of beachfront property. In 2017, the active duty population was 185,514. There were 1,850,000 visitors to lifeguarded pools and beaches, and there were four off-duty water fatalities. This relates to a 0.0022% drowning rate for the USMC.