Small children can drown when they lean forward to look into a bucket or open the toilet. Because the head is the heaviest part of a small child, it is easy for him/her to fall over into a container. Containers filled with liquid often weigh more than the small child and will not tip over when the child falls in.
Swimming pools —– 435 (31)
Jacuzzi/hot tub/whirlpool/spa —– 22 (2)
Bathtub —– 81 (6)
Buckets —– 26 (2)
Other specified sites —– 15 (1)
Other unspecified sites 3 (
Now for the stats on accidental gun deaths. The CDC’s WISQARS says:
1999 . . . . . . 12
2000 . . . . . . 19
2001 . . . . . . 15
2002 . . . . . . 12
2003 . . . . . . . 7
2004 . . . . . . 15
It’s a close race but when it comes to accidents buckets kill more kids! This is a best attempt at an apple to apple comparison of accidental deaths. The accidental drowning statistics are incomplete for a variety of reasons. The most notable is that 8% of the death certificates for accidental drownings didn’t list the location of drowning. So it is highly likely that the number of children that drown in buckets is higher.
The UMass Dartmouth professor Peter Friedman writes “even bicycles and tricycles caused more accidental fatalities (762) than firearms.” And according to University of Chicago professor Steven Levitt, swimming pools are 100x more dangerous for children.
PEDIATRICS Vol. 108 No. 1 July 2001, pp. 85-89 Where Children Drown, United States, 1995, Ruth et al
Children’s Hospital Boston, Water Safety
CDC, National Vital Statistics Reports, Deaths, Injuries 2002, Volume 54, Number 10, page 35
CDC, National Center for Health Statistics, Mortality Data – Injury Summary