Las Vegas firefighters say a woman’s quick action of administering CPR to a toddler who was in a Jacuzzi, saved the boys life this evening. The incident was investigated by Las Vegas Metropolitan Police and Las Vegas Fire & Rescue and was ruled accidental with no neglect. Police and fire officials said it was an unfortunate accident, but point out how important it is to watch children at all times in water, even when you are right next to them.
Fire & Rescue dispatchers received a number of calls at 5:43 p.m. that a toddler was involved in a water type emergency at a pool in a condominium complex on West Washington Avenue near Buffalo Drive. When firefighters arrived in less than a few minutes (the complex is across the road from fire station 44), the toddler was already out of the water and was crying when he was loaded into a Fire & Rescue ambulance and taken to the hospital.
The investigation revealed that the toddler was in a three-foot deep Jacuzzi which is next to a large pool with four other young children from the same family and a grandmother who was sitting on the edge of the Jucuzzi with her legs in the water watching the children. After a while the grandmother got up and started screaming for help and pulled the toddler from the water. She began to give him back blows.
People were also sitting around the pool including Heidi Baber, who is a neighbor of the family. Baber got up and grabbed the toddler and started to administer CPR. Baber said the child was limp and appeared lifeless. She continued to do CPR until large amounts of water came out his month and nose. She cleared the mouth and nose and continued. When firefighters arrived on scene, the toddler began to cry. Firefighters then took over medical care and transported the toddler to the hospital.
It appears to officials in the commotion of the children playing in the Jacuzzi, the toddler took in too much water and was overcome. That is when the grandmother yelled for help.
Baber was emotional when she was notified later in the evening that her efforts were successful in saving the boy’s life.
Firefighters say one way that the incident could have been prevented is if the toddler would have been wearing a life preserver while in the water. Children who are very young or can not swim should wear an approved water flotation device while in or near water. They can still enjoy the comforts of the water and yet have an increased margin of safety.
The incident is ruled accidental, preventable, near drowning.
People should remember the A-B-C-Ds of Drowning Prevention:
A – Adult supervision
B – Barriers around the pool
C – CPR Everyone should learn CPR – it worked tonight.
D – Devices – Wearing a flotation device might have prevented tonight’s incident.
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MEDIA NOTE: Permission was given by the woman who performed the rescue to use her name. She has also granted permission to be interviewed by the media to talk about the importance of CPR and what happened. If you want her contact information, call me at (702) 303-2993.