NewsTreasure CoastRegion Martin County


4 child drowning calls in Martin County prompt urgent safety message from firefighters

Josh Jenkins, Martin County Fire Rescue's Community Risk Reduction Specialist, said one of those calls was fatal
Posted at 9:55 PM, May 24, 2024

STUART, Fla. — In the wake of several child drowning calls in Martin County, firefighters are urging safety measures and prevention ahead of the holiday weekend.

Josh Jenkins, a community risk reduction specialist for Martin County Fire Rescue (MCFR), said crews responded to four child drowning calls since January, two of which occurred in the past two weeks.

One of those he said was fatal.

This upcoming Memorial Day weekend, Jenkins said MCFR is expecting lots more people to cool off in the water, and with alcohol typically part of holiday celebrations, urged parents to pay attention and be prepared if something does happen.

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"The first link in what we call the Chain of Survival is recognizing someone is in distress and calling 911," said Jenkins. "If we don't activate our EMS division first, time is wasting and those wheels are not turning on our rescue. And then we want that person performing quality CPR immediately and until relieved."

The fire department offers life-saving and CPR training via two options: a free, hour-long hands-on lecture or a two-hour-long certification program, the latter of which costs $40.

MCFR is also partnering with Sailfish Splash Waterpark in Stuart, which partners with the Red Cross to offer free swim lessons and drowning prevention training.

For information on CPR certification through Martin County Fire Rescue, click here.

For information on registering for free swim lessons, click here.