Fewer children drown in Netherlands

Swimming lesson (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Tommy Wong)Swimming lesson (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Tommy Wong)

Over the past decades the number of child drownings in the Netherlands decreased significantly. Every year an average of 80 people drown in the Netherlands, nine of which are kids under the age of 15. In the 50's an annual average of between 400 and 500 people drowned, nearly 300 of which were children, according to figures Statistics Netherlands published on Tuesday.

The number of drownings in the Netherlands has been fluctuating around 80 cases since 2007. About 40 percent of drownings happen to people in the age group 30 to 65 years.

Between 1996 and 2015 a total of 1,723 people drowned in the Netherlands. 456 of these cases involved people of foreign descent. Two thirds of that number were people of non-Western descent. Death by drowning among non-Western people in the Netherlands is relatively high in almost all age groups, including children - 1.3 of every 100 thousand non-western children in the Netherlands drown, compared to 0.5 of every 100 thousand among Dutch children.

This week alone two children drowned in the Netherlands - a 5-year-old who fell into a canal in Veenendaal and a 3-year-old who ended up in the water of the Zuidervaart in Zaandam.  Last month a 10-year-old girl drowned in the Lage Vaart on Johnsonpad in Almere. And in June an 8-year-old boy drowned in a fishpond in Meijel and a 12-year-old footballer for Sparta Rotterdam drowned during a team party at a pool.