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1-year-old Phoenix boy is 14th child to drown in Maricopa County this year

The number of child drownings in Maricopa County this year had already surpassed last year’s total earlier this summer. The latest incident occurred Tuesday, when a 1-year-old boy became this year’s 14th victim.

The toddler was found in a backyard pool. Phoenix police Sgt. Brian Bower says investigators are not sure how he was able to get through multiple barriers.

"The backdoor that led to the pool was locked. There was a fence up," Bower said.

Jay Arthur is the president of the Drowning Prevention Coalition of Arizona. He stresses the importance of constant supervision around water.

"We call them designated watchers. What that means is that if you were out by the pool and you got that responsibility, you do nothing but watch the kids, eye-to-eye contact," Arthur said.

Arthur says drownings can be prevented through protective measures and educating both children and parents.

As of July 2, there have been 41 total water-related deaths this year in Maricopa County, including 14 kids under 12, 1 teen and 26 adults, according to Children's Safety Zone.

Greenlee Clark is an intern at KJZZ pursuing a communications degree with an emphasis in broadcasting and new media at Grand Canyon University.
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