No matter what, this has already been shaping up to be quite an interesting year. Today, let’s explore the total U.S. Drowning Stats for March 2020. As people are avoiding public interactions out of coronavirus fears, you might expect that to be reflected in our monthly check-up on drowning numbers.

For now, that’s not quite the case.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drowning is responsible for more deaths among children aged one through four than any other cause, except for birth defects. As these statistics indicate, this sad warning still holds true.

U.S. Drowning Stats for March 2020

Most water safety experts believe that with proper education and preparation, drowning is preventable. Each month, Life Saver Pool Fence shares drowning stats and maps that are presented by Total Aquatic Programming. This shared data clearly indicates the exact ages and causes of the previous month’s drowning incidents.

As you will see below, the March 2020 drowning stats will be compared with other March statistics, reaching all the way back to the year 2009. Through careful examination of these numbers, experts are able to recognize areas where our education is lacking.

As our regular monthly readers know, this basic 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

Chart: Drowning Stats for March 2020


US Drowning Stats March 2020

First, let’s look at the good news: looking at the full range of data on this chart, the drowning stats for March 2020 are nowhere near the worst. In fact, this month has been pretty good, overall. Though there are no huge advances, there  also doesn’t contain any devastating news beyond a small uptick in drownings among teens and children aged four-and-up. However, this doesn’t take COVID-19 and social distancing into account.

According to social distancing warnings, a lot less people were likely using community pools. This should have correlated to some significant drops. In some cases, such as children 12-and-under, perhaps it has. This number is significantly lower than it was in many recent years. That said, it might be too early to tell if there is a relationship between the two. After all, many of the social distancing advisories were not in place until partway through the month.

The drowning stats for April 2020 will likely be a better barometer for this, but only time will tell. For owners of private swimming pools, please remember that it is perfectly safe to swim during the COVID-19 pandemic. As long as we follow proper safety precautions, swimming is a healthy way to exercise and pass the time.

Drowning Map for 2019

In addition to the March 2020 drowning stats above, we have been provided 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 through July 2019.


Drowning By State 2019

Understanding This Map

Please note that the numbers inside each state on this map represent the ages of the children, not the number of children. Each age represents one child. So, if a child was 10-11-12 years old, their age is underlined so as not to confuse as two separate numbers.  For example, a 12-year-old would be listed on the map as “12.”

Where Do These Drowning Stats Come From?

As mentioned earlier, 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.