A baby learning to swim has been left under intensive care after having to struggle underwater for nearly a minute while pool staff were not paying attention.
The seven-month-old boy’s swimming ring had flipped, leaving his body immersed in water upside down. He later slipped out of the ring and carried on struggling.
Staff only realised the dangerous situation about 46 seconds later before removing the child from the pool, according to Chinese media reports.
The seven-month-old baby was left upside down underwater after his swimming ring flipped.
The baby is currently hospitalised in Quanzhou, south-east China’s Fujian Province, reported Quzhou TV.
According to the report, the horrifying incident occurred in the evening of May 17. It’s said the small training pool is run by an infant care centre.
The baby’s mother, known by her surname Zhang, claimed she had just left to buy baby formula next door when the accident happened.
Ms Zhang told Quanzhou TV that she had bought a membership card from the centre and took her son there to learn to swim daily.
She explained that she fed her son milk after every swimming session and she happened to run out of formula that day, so she decided to buy four tins of formula from a store next door.
She insisted that she had asked poolside staff to keep an eye on her son.
The poolside workers only realised the dangerous situation and saved the boy 46 seconds later.
Staff quickly ran towards the pool and took the struggling boy out of the training pool.
Store workers carried the boy and ran towards his mother who was buying baby formula…
While she was buying the milk powder, a store worker held her son and rushed towards her. She was told that her son had nearly drowned, said the mother.
She claimed when she saw her son, his lips had turned purple and there were injuries on his face.
The heartbroken mother said her son had most likely scratched himself repeatedly while trying to wave his arms to stay afloat.
Ms Zhang and the store workers quickly held the child upside down while patting his back in a bid to get rid of the water from his body, said the report.
They called for an ambulance after the child started crying a few minutes later. However in order to save time, Ms Zhang didn’t wait for the ambulance. Instead, she took her son to the hospital by herself on a scooter.
The boy’s mother said the pool was not busy at the time and staff had not taken care of her son.
The mother also said she had asked the staff to keep an eye on her son before leaving.
She said her son remained in hospital for further checkups. She said he might have got inflammation in the lungs. She also worried the possible impact of a lack of oxygen to his brain.
Ms Zhang and the store are currently locked in a dispute as to who should be responsible for the accident.
Ms Zhang told QZTV that the worker hadn’t looked after her son at all as she argued ‘there were only two children in the pool’ including her son.
The report said that the store has yet to apologise or offer compensation to the baby’s family, and the boy’s family has reported the case to the police.