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Aust N Z J Public Health. 1996 Oct;20(5):547-9.

Drowning fatalities of children in Tasmania: differences from national data.

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Menzies Centre for Population Health Research, University of Tasmania, Hobart.


All drownings of people under 15 years of age in Tasmania from 1981 to 1993 were identified from the Tasmanian coroner's case files. Age- and sex-specific mortality rates were calculated and found to be similar to Australian drowning mortality rates. An exception was the lower drowning rate for Tasmanian females aged 0 to 4 years. Only 9 per cent of drowning deaths were caused by immersion in a swimming pool, 32 per cent of deaths occurred in dams and ponds and 21 per cent occurred in a river. Most drownings (88 per cent) associated with dams, ponds, swimming pools and baths were in the 0-to-4-year age group. Compared with Australia as a whole, toddlers drowning in swimming pools is uncommon in Tasmania; however, there are relatively more drownings in dams and ponds. Strategies for the prevention of drowning in childhood in Tasmania should consider the hazards associated with rural living.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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