Father of 10-month-old who nearly drowned explains, "It's my fault; I was distracted"
Last updated 2/16/2010 at Noon
The father of the 10-month-old toddler who nearly drowned during her bath on February 15 explained that he was distracted by his other daughter and younger brother for a few minutes before finding his daughter.
The father, a 24-year-old medic within the military, said he started to run the bath after the family dinner for his daughters – the 10-month-old and her sister, a two-year-old – while his wife ran to the store for dessert.
As the father waited for the bath water, he placed his 10-month-old in the tub and went to the adjoining bedroom to undress his two-year-old. As he prepared his daughter, his 5-year-old brother began talking with him, distracting him.
“I had my back turned on the bath for like five minutes,” said the father. “It was my fault; I was distracted.” Just as the father was going to turn back to the bath, he heard the baby's mother walking through the door.
The man decided to hide behind the door to surprise his wife, and after he had done so, turned to the bathroom to find his baby face-down in the water.
“My [wife] began screaming and called 911, and was told that the fire department was on its way,” said the father. The man began CPR on his baby. Shortly afterward, his 18-year-old brother came in, assessed the situation, and also began helping with CPR.
“I got her to scream and cleared her airway by the time the fire department arrived,” said the father. The child was released from the hospital on February 16.
Child Protective Services did investigate the situation, and requested that the couple enter parental counseling. The father believes what happened to him was an innocent mistake that could have happened to anyone. “Parents leave their kids in the bath for a moment all the time, especially if they leave the bathroom to get something real quick, like a camera, if their kid is doing something funny,” he said.
(previous story Feb. 16)
A 10-month-old toddler was airlifted to Children's Hospital after she suffered a near drowning on Monday evening, February 15.
According to North County Fire Prevention District public information officer John Buchanan, the 10-month-old female slipped under the water during a bath. When the situation was discovered, a call was placed to 911, and the child's guardians were talked through the CPR process via telephone.
“After CPR, the child spit up and began crying,” said Buchanan.
Paramedics arrived on scene shortly afterward and the child was transported to Children's Hospital. According to Buchanan, the child is “expected to have an optimistic, positive outcome.”