A 19-year-old woman who drowned in the Hutt River was not a strong swimmer and got into trouble in deep water, police say.

The woman had been swimming in the river while on an outing with her family. Shortly before 2pm her family and others spotted her waving for help.

When they pulled her from the water the woman was not breathing and emergency services were called. An ambulance staff member talked the caller through the CPR procedure until firefighters, who were first to arrive, took over.

Despite their efforts the woman could not be revived and died at the scene.

NZ Herald Thursday Jan 11, 2010 (edited)


In Bangladesh, bisected by some of the world's mightiest rivers, an age-old danger has emerged as the biggest threat to children - drowning.

Around 17,000 children drown in Bangladesh every year, proportionately more than anywhere else in the world, and experts say the problem will only increase as the incidence of typhoons, flooding and rising sea-levels. Most of the children who drown perish within 20m of their homes.

Now aid workers are battling to reduce the toll by teaching children to swim. Instructors from Australia have been teaching swimming and life-saving techniques to Bangladeshis, who then pass on the skills to children. Swimming classes are being held in makeshift bamboo pens that have been set up in murky ponds and canals.

"We are giving these children a vaccine against death," said Shahinur Alom, a community swimming instructor.

"These children have so much potential. They could be doctors or presidents, but if they go to the water and drown they will just die ... We are giving them a valuable lesson - how to swim. It gives them confidence. Before, some of the children were even too scared to come into the water."

NZ Herald Thursday Aug 20, 2009 (edited)

Need we say any more?