standard After Drowning Deaths, Brooklynites Urged to Follow Proper Water Safety Habits

The Borough President led a press conference yesterday at Grand Army Plaza on Water Safety (BP's Office)

The Borough President led a press conference yesterday at Grand Army Plaza on Water Safety (BP’s Office)

In the wake of multiple drowning deaths across the borough, Brooklynites are being urged to exercise proper water safety habits.

Representatives from the Swim Strong Foundation, a non-profit organization that works with children and adults to combat drowning through affordable swim lessons, appeared with the Borough President and the family of a two-year-old drowning victim at Grand Army Plaza yesterday to stress several important tips.

“Water is a part of life of daily life here in Brooklyn, with the borough surrounded by rivers and bays; it is an economic driver, an educational tool and a recreational outlet for so many,” said Borough President Eric Adams. “Knowledge is power, and we are looking to empower Brooklynites with the information they need to have a safe, healthy relationship with the water.”

The press conference follows the death of two-year-old Ruhshona Kurbonova, who wandered into Prospect Park Lake and drowned two days ago. The Kurbonova family attended the press conference.

“We must turn pain into purpose, committing ourselves in the wake of Ruhshona’s tragic passing to ensuring all Brooklynites know how to be safe around water,” said Borough President Adams.

In addition to the Kurbonova family’s tragedy, in recent weeks, a 29-year-old man in Coney Island, a 21-year-old man in Williamsburg and two 13-year-old boys in the Bronx River all perished in drowning-related deaths. These recent events underscore larger national statistics discussed by Borough President Adams, including that, on average, ten people die due to drowning in the United States every day. Furthermore, drowning is the leading cause of death for children five years and younger.

Borough President Adams shared a number of water safety tips with the public, including always swimming near a lifeguard, never swimming alone, supervising children closely even when lifeguards are present, refraining from alcohol and other substances while swimming as well as not swimming after dark. He also urged those wanting to enjoy the water to do so at Brooklyn’s public beaches and pools.