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Lifeguards help save 3-year-old child’s life after near-drowning experience

Published: Jul. 29, 2021 at 5:46 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 29, 2021 at 11:28 PM CDT
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NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KTRE) - A child’s life was saved, and an investigation is still on going after a near drowning at splash kingdom Nacogdoches this week. The quick responses from lifeguards were key to helping save the child’s life. CEO Johnny Blevins is proud of the staff’s efforts.

“Our guards noticed a guest in distress in the river and responded to that,” Johnny Blevins said.

A three-year-old child was found unresponsive in a pool Friday afternoon at Splash Kingdom Waterpark in Nacogdoches. While waiting for EMS services to arrive, lifeguards responded by performing compressions to make sure that water was out of the child’s lungs.

“At this point talking to the mom every day the kid is great, great recovery and we’re so excited you know that’s why we’re here,” Blevins said.

Splash Kingdom Timber Falls makes sure that their staff is ready to perform a rescue at any time.

“Many people think that a lifeguard job 16, 17, 18-year-olds, are just standing there to twirl a whistle and that is not at all what we expect at Splash Kingdom. So, we’re just very proud that they’re there, they’re doing their job and we have a good outcome,” Blevins said.

Grant Pederson, operations manager at Splash Kingdom Nacogdoches, says that CPR training, scenario training for guests with suspected spinal injuries, and rapid extraction training are just some of the drills lifeguards regularly practice.

“All of our guards have to have at least four hours of service a month. So, they are properly trained both daily and weekly, so it’s a testament to how hard my guards work,” Pederson said.

The waterpark says they will continue to hold their staff to a high standard and make sure that every employee is knowledgeable.

“We can go all Summer, we can go multiple Summers without having a significant rescue, but we have to be ready every day when something like that happens,” Blevins said.

Detectives at the Nacogdoches Police Department started an investigation regarding the circumstances of the near drowning.

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