Today, we’re taking a look at the official drowning stats for February 2021. Unfortunately, things aren’t looking good. The total number of drowning incidents is at an all time high. 

U.S. Drowning Stats for February 2021

As our loyal readers know, we regularly compare the monthly drowning numbers for each of the past 11 years. These detailed statistics and maps are provided thanks to Total Aquatic Programming.

To start things off, below this section is a chart that explores the drowning stats for the month of February. Included are February stats for 2021 and the same month for each of the previous years, going all the way back to 2009.

Using this information, water safety experts can track trends and patterns of behavior. These can help to provide insight into which safety precautions are working and which are not.

Total Aquatic Programming’s data tracks more than 15 separate items from every drowning that occurs throughout the country.

These items include, but are not limited to:

  • date
  • state
  • city
  • county
  • age and gender of the victim
  • ethnicity, if recorded
  • body of water in which the drowning occurred
  • and several other circumstances that can help to provide some guidance in the prevention of future drownings.

Chart: Drowning Statistics for February 2009-2021

Feb Drowning Stats

This chart focuses on four key age groups and how they are affected by drowning:

  • Children aged four and younger
  • Children aged 12 and under
  • Teenagers
  • Adults, meaning anyone older than teens

As you can see, this isn’t looking good. Across all age groups, there are more drownings than there were in the past few years.

For adults in particular, we’re at an all-time high. That said, kids seem to be in more danger as well. Compared to last year, the total drowning incidents are up to 79 from a previous all time low of 35.

What Happened?

This leads us to our next question… what happened? This seems like a major step back for water safety. Well, it’s hard to say for certain, but there are a number of possibilities. First, let’s talk about the ice. The weather of February 2021 was particularly brutal in certain states. Chilly temperatures mean that people may venture out onto the ice. However, thin ice can be extremely dangerous. If the ice breaks with someone on it, it can have tragic results.

Feb 2021 Chart

Even with cracked ice and dangerous weather conditions, the neglect of swimming safety and education is another simple but strong possibility for the increase of drownings. A false sense of security can be deadly, so it always pays to be prepared.

Understanding The Numbers: Drowning Maps for 2019/2020 

In addition to the February 2021 drowning stats, Total Aquatic Programming has provided us with two additional graphics. The first is a nationwide drowning map for all of 2019. This map identifies “hot spots” of child drowning incidents on a state-by-state basis. Please take a look at the map below. It has been updated to include all drownings that have occurred since July 2019.

2020 Map

Up next is the detailed 2020 map that takes a closer look at child drownings. Please note that the numbers listed on each state represent the ages of the children involved in these incidents, not the number of children. Each age represents one child. For example, a 12-year-old would be listed on the map as “12.”

Children Map 2020

The Source of These Drowning Statistics

All of these U.S. Drowning Stats and graphics are brought to us courtesy of Sue and Mick Nelson of Total Aquatic Programming, LLC. USA Swimming, the national governing body for competitive swimming in the United States, also uses this information. If you are interested in learning more about the people behind this data, watch our full Child Safety Source interview with Mick Nelson. Additionally, you can visit Total Aquatic Programming’s official website.

If you have a swimming pool at home, prevent accidental drowning by installing a mesh pool fence today!