A parent’s protective instincts are no joke.
Albert Passavanti and his family were lounging by the pool in Palm Beach County, Florida on a sunny Sunday when something terrifying happened.
As Passavanti’s toddler son chased an inflatable ball, he fell into the pool. The 18-month-old doesn’t know how to swim.
When Passavanti saw his son was in danger, he jumped to his feet, bolted over a 4-foot fence and dove into the water.
— WPTV (@WPTV) June 25, 2019
The father’s quick thinking and reflexes saved his son’s life.
“The second you see it; you get Superman strength and just have to go for it, whatever you got to do,” he told CNN affiliate WPTV. “It didn’t even cross my mind to go around. It was point A to point B.”
There was a fence around one side of the pool, but it wasn’t entirely baby proof.
In a Facebook post with a video showing the dive, Passavanti warned, “Baby gates only work when you close them.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) urges parents to be within an arm’s length when young children are around or in water. Parents should avoid becoming distracted by other activities such as cellphone use or drinking alcohol.
Caregivers should also consider learning CPR, teaching their children water-safety skills, and putting life jackets on their kids, the AAP says.
Drowning is the leading cause of death for young children, according to the NSC—mostly due to falling into a pool or being left in a bathtub.
The CPSC states, “Of the 3,786 drownings in 2016, more than 12% were children age 4 and younger, according to Injury Facts. Bathtubs, toilets and even buckets also can pose a danger for very young children.”
“Most parents think water safety is first and foremost on their minds whenever they are enjoying summer activities with their young kids. But when the unthinkable happens, caregivers often say, ‘I only looked away for a second.’”