When a 5-year-old child was found at the bottom of a swimming pool in Fallbrook on Thursday, October 1, at approximately 4:50 p.m., a team effort ensued with what appears to be leading to a positive outcome.
Emergency responders say the child’s mother called 9-1-1 from the site in the 2100 block of Kirkcaldy Road, within the Peppertree Park housing development.
“The child was not breathing and there was no pulse,” said John Buchanan, public information officer for North County Fire Protection District.
It has been estimated that the child may have been submerged in the pool for up to five minutes.
Before paramedics arrived on-scene, Buchanan said the 9-1-1 dispatcher talked individuals at the site through administering CPR to the child.
“That was very beneficial,” said Buchanan. Another benefit to the situation, he said, was that a fire engine was within one mile of the residence when its paramedics heard the call come in.
“The fact that paramedics were so close by, combined with the aid of the dispatcher and the individuals performing CPR until help got there, made this a successful resuscitation effort,” said Buchanan.
Paramedics continued resuscitation efforts when they arrived. The child began to breathe on her own and was subsequently flown by helicopter to Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego.
“During the helicopter trip, no further CPR was needed,” said Buchanan.
Although hospital officials haven’t confirmed the child’s progress, unofficial sources believe her recovery has been positive.
“This was a situation that demonstrated a great team effort,” said Buchanan. “When a dispatcher is talking someone through administering CPR, especially to a child, it is a very stressful situation. The outcome in this case was pretty incredible.”