Toddler found in pool dies

A WODONGA toddler has died after being found unconscious in her neighbour’s pool.

The girl, 2, was found by her mother face down in the pool at their neighbour’s Dalton Avenue home on Friday, about 6.20pm.

The child’s mother and neighbours applied CPR until paramedics arrived.

Police and ambulance arrived and paramedics continued CPR while the girl was taken to Albury Base Hospital but she died at the hospital at 7.30pm.

The little girl would have celebrated her third birthday in May.

Detective Acting Sgt Andrew Leonard, of Wodonga police, said the family and neighbours were devastated by the loss.

“This is an enormous tragedy which has devastated the lives of two families,” he said.

He said the neighbours were not home at the time the girl drowned.

Life Saving Victoria spokeswoman Jennifer Roberts said that children aged up to four had one of the highest drowning rates in Victoria, with drowning being a leading preventable cause of death in children of that age in Australia.

“In 2011 to 2012, three children aged to four drowned in Victoria,” she said.

“Most drowning deaths for this age group occur around the home or in home swimming pools.

“It can take as little as 20 seconds for a child to drown, and drowning can often be silent, so it is just so important to supervise them closely around water.”

Sgt Leonard said there would be an “extensive investigation” into the drowning by police.

“We are very keen to speak to anyone who may have observed a small child walking in the area between 5.50pm and 6.20pm,” he said.

A report will be prepared for the coroner.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Wodonga police on (02) 6049 2600.

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