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Boy dead after drowning at Swedish water park

Boy dead after drowning at Swedish water park

Published: 13 Jul 2012 08:57 GMT+02:00
Updated: 13 Jul 2012 08:57 GMT+02:00

A boy has died after life guards found him at the bottom of a pool at a waterpark in central Sweden on Thursday.

The boy, who was born in 2005, had been swimming at Leksand Sommarland theme park near Lake Siljan when he was found at the bottom of the deep end by life guards, according to police in Dalarna County.

While it is unclear how the accident occurred, the water park’s head Mats Nobelius explained in a statement that a lifeguard had jumped in to save the boy as soon as the child was noticed.

However, resuscitation efforts proved fruitless and the boy died in the ambulance on the way to hospital.

“We have never been involved in something like this in all the 28 years we’ve had the park,” Nobelius said to the TT news agency.

“You question yourself and even the staff – if we could have acted differently. But the guards were good and jumped in as soon as they saw the shadow that was on the way to the bottom,” he said.

The boy was found in the 3.5 metre deep pool, an area that has five trained guards surrounding it, according to the park manager.

The 25 minute response time from the ambulance left Nobelius considering the importance of upgrading his park’s resuscitation equipment to beyond that of the national regulations.

“As the ambulance situation in rural areas is bad and they can be quite far away, then maybe one needs a little more equipment than the rules require,” he said.

The pool, which has a total of 100,000 visitors a year, had 700 swimmers present at the time of the accident.

A police investigation has been launched and the boy’s parents have been notified.

TT/The Local/og

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Your comments about this article

10:00 July 13, 2012 by cattie
This is so sad and my sympathy to the family.

The boy died in the ambulance? Which took 25 minutes to get there?
10:46 July 13, 2012 by NyDag
Sadly I must again mention how bad ambulances services are in my country.
10:46 July 13, 2012 by azimuth
#1 Yeah it's the Swedish way of running ambulance. I guess they even surveyed the park staff when they called the ambulance kinda "are you sure that the boy is not breathing?"...
10:50 July 13, 2012 by Puffin
@ cattie

unfortunately Dalarna is a very large rural county of 30,000 sq/km with a small population - it only has 22 ambulances to cover that area - if the one stationed in Leksand was already on a call most likely they would have to send one from Falun or Borlänge almost 50km away
11:17 July 13, 2012 by Migga
Sweden is the fifth largest country in Europe but it has only 9 million living there. That means that it`s a huge country with a low population density. In turn that means that people living in rural areas will be ways off from ambulance services. With that in mind I don`t think 25 min is all that horrible but when it`s about life and death it`s ofcourse to long.
12:23 July 13, 2012 by Puffin
.... also it is important to remember - sadly - that many Dalarna ambulances at the time were also diverted to the tragedy involving the Fire Engine crash in the far south of the county - that occured just prior to this tragedy.

I believe that a quarter of Dalarnas ambulances (5 or 6) were at the scene to get the dead and injured to hospital which meant it was hard to get ambulances quickly to other areas

Dalarna has a huge area 30,000 sq/km yet only around 275,000 full time residents - så less than 10 per square km
12:44 July 13, 2012 by Dazzler
One has to wonder where the parents were. Was this a case of using the park employees as a baby sitter?
14:56 July 13, 2012 by Puffin
@ Dazzler

Not a nice comment.

It's not clear at the moment whether the parents were even there. The boy was part of a group of 40 people from Malung whose trip was organised by the church with free tickets they received from Sommarland
20:18 July 13, 2012 by tadchem
I would be willing to wager that the boy was dead before the life guards saw hiim at the bottom of the pool. People rarely die *after* they are pulled alive out of the water.
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