It’s been seven weeks since former Olympic skier Bode Miller and wife Morgan Beck Miller announced their 19-month-old daughter Emeline Grier passed away after a drowning accident. Emeline “Emmy” Miller died on June 10th after falling into a neighbor’s pool.
The couple decided to speak with the Today show and discuss the drowning accident, to raise awareness about this leading cause of death amonth children ages 4 and under.
The couple stated, that earlier that morning Morgan watched her four children swimming at the Miller’s house, strapping a floaty on Emmy before the toddler jumped in. Miller took the children to their a neighbor’s house, where they were playing in front of adults. She then noticed the children were too quiet, and stood up to go check on them, noticing Emily was gone. She noticed the door leading to the backyard was cracked open. By the time Morgan and her children went outside, Emmy was floating in the pool.
Morgan said she immediately jumped in and pulled Emmy out while conducting CPR, but was too late. When they arrived to a nearby hospital, the toddler was pronounced dead. According to the doctor, the little girl didn’t have enough oxygen in the brain. Bode stated he and his wife needed to speak about their daughter’s tragic death, after finding out that drowning is the leading cause of unintentional deaths for children.
According to experts, at least 163 children fatally drown during summer in swimming pools. Nearly 70 percent of deaths were children younger than 5. It is important to remember that one can take steps to reduce that number and keep young toddlers safe. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends the following pool safety tips:
- Installing an enclosed pool fence. The fence should be at least 4 feet high so children don’t be tempted to climb up. The fence should not be chain link and lawn furniture should be kept away from sides.
- Have a self-latching or self-closing gate. Experts recommend having the latches sit at least 54 inches above her bottom on the gate.
- Add door alarms from the house at the pool area.
- Keep pool covers. These covers should cover the entire book. Remember, these covers are not a substitute for adequate fencing.
- Lock or remover ladders to above ground pools when not in use to avoid slips.
- Enroll your children in swim lessons. AAP recommends lessons for children older than 4, and for children between the ages of 1 and 4 who are “ready to swim”. One should look at their children’s frequently exposure to water, and physical limitations.
- Never leave children alone near pools or other bodies of water.