29 Dec 2009

Drownings of younger people increase

7:42 am on 29 December 2009

The number of drownings among those aged between 15 and 25 has increased slightly in the nine years to 2008, while the overall drowning toll has decreased markedly, according to figures from Water Safety New Zealand.

The organisation is calling on the Government to invest in school pools and to ensure swimming and water survival skills are in the school curriculum.

Water Safety New Zealand says this is the first generation to have come through primary schools under a curriculum that no longer emphasises swimming and water survival skills.

It predicts that without school pools or swimming in the curriculum, the drowning toll could climb over the next 20 years to about 180 a year.