Her daughter almost drowned when her hair got caught in a pool filter
A mom is sharing the terrifying story of a pool danger that some might not think of. She’s now trying to raise awareness so other families don’t have to go through the same thing.
Alex Morgan and her family were vacationing in Playa Blanca, Lanzarote over the Easter holiday when their 6-year-old daughter Darcey nearly drowned. And it wasn’t because she couldn’t swim.
In a now-viral Facebook post, Morgan explains that her daughter was swimming when her hair became caught in the filter of the pool’s waterfall feature. Because her hair was stuck, the child was trapped underwater for over two minutes, unable to reach the surface.
“Some incredibly brave people saved our little girls life that day. Her hair was pulled and pulled before it was ripped. Darcey was unconscious and had to be given CPR at the poolside,” Morgan writes.
But that wasn’t the end of their ordeal. Darcey was rushed to the hospital where she underwent x-rays, tests and was kept overnight for observation. “Her oxygen levels were low and she has lots of fluid on her right lung.”
Morgan acknowledges her family’s good fortune in that Darcey was well enough to head home the following morning, but realizes it all could’ve ended very differently. “This was the worst day of our lives. We are still suffering to come to terms with it all now but also feel incredibly lucky to still have our beautiful, brave little girl.”
While the Morgan family deals with what they’re suggesting is an inadequate response from the hotel, they’re also trying to raise awareness of this very real, and possibly overlooked, danger to kids in swimming pools. “We want to make as many people aware of the dangers in swimming pools as we feel so strongly about this.”
Elizabeth Klinefelter, the campaign lead for Pool Safely, a government-led effort to raise awareness and educate the public about water safety tells POPSUGAR, “The federal government’s drowning prevention program strongly recommends that children be taught to stay away from drains, suction outlets, and filters in swimming pools and spas.”
And it’s not just hair that can become snared in a pool’s filter. “Children’s hair — along with limbs, jewelry, or bathing suits — can get stuck in a drain or suction opening. In addition, parents and caregivers should never allow children to enter a pool or spa that has a loose, broken, or missing drain cover.”
Although the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act was enacted in 2008 and mandates by federal law that public pools, including hotels, schools, and apartment buildings, have the safer drain covers, it’s not yet a requirement for residential pools. Klinefelter points out that while it’s encouraged that anyone with a swimming pool at home use them, there have still been 17 victims of entrapment from 2012-2016. Most of them were children.
Which is why the Morgan family simply wants to get the message out about the potential for danger.
“Myself and Gareth don’t want any other parents/ family members to go through what we experienced that day. We will never get over what happened but if this post can raise some awareness, save someone’s life, then we will be happy.”