Water-Related Injuries

photo: kayaking
Every day, about ten people die from unintentional drowning. Of these, two will be children aged 14 or younger. Drowning is the fifth leading cause of unintentional injury death for people of all ages, and the second leading cause of injury death for children ages 1 to 14 years.1

In fact, more children 1-4 years die from drowning than any other cause of death except birth defects.

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In the Spotlight

Global report on drowning: preventing a leading killerExternal
Globally, more than 40 people die by drowning every hour of every day. Drowning is one of the top 10 leading causes of death for children in every region of the world. This global WHO report aims to bring more attention and action to this highly preventable worldwide public health challenge.

CDC Research Article: Disparities in Drowning among Children and Young Adults
African American children 5–19 years are 5.5 times more likely to drown in a swimming pool than their white peers; differences in swimming skill might explain this disparity.


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS) [online]. [cited 2011 Apr 6]. Available from: URL: http://www.cdc.gov/injury/wisqars