Tucson child nearly drowns after floaties slip off arms

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TUCSON, Ariz. -- As temperatures rise, more people are hopping in the pool, but a near-drowning incident this weekend is serving as a reminder to watch kids around water.

It was supposed to be a family get together in the pool, but it nearly turned fatal for a 3-year-old boy when his floaties slipped off his arms.

"Floaties do provide some type of a false sense of security to the child and to the parent if those floaties happen to slip off, which sounds like what happened yesterday, then the child gets into trouble," said Captain Trish Tracy with the Tucson Fire Department.

Capt. Tracy says floaties and other devices should not be a substitute for adult supervision.

"Regardless of how many adults are around the pool, have one person designated to be that lifeguard or the designated person to watch the children in the water," said Tracy.

Bob Schmidt's 6-year-old son Alexander might swim like a fish, but Bob says he won't take his eyes off him in the water.

"When they're young, that's when you really have to watch," said Bob Schmidt

Bob says he has never allowed Alexander to wear floaties, but urges parents to get kids swimming early.

"Practice makes perfect. Get them in the pool and try not to use the floaties. Get them to learn to swim on their own," said Schmidt.

Tragedy can strike at any moment. Captain Tracy says the best thing this family did was call 911, and stay on the line.

"CPR instructions were given.  The 911 caller followed those directions and when we arrived on scene the child was doing much better than when he was pulled out of the water," said Tracy.

The 3-year-old boy stayed at the hospital overnight and returned home Sunday.