Epidemiological aspects of drowning and non-fatal drowning in the waters of Amsterdam.

We examined who, when, and where people non-fatally drowned of drowned in Amsterdam between January 2011 and December 2015 so that in the future more targeted and effective measures can be taken to prevent drowning. Data on non fatal drownings (N = 515, fire department database) were combined with the forensic medicine data on drowning fatalities (N=88). Who drowns in Amsterdam? The majority of those who drowned were men (82%). A high percentage of the people who drowned were under the influence of alcohol or drugs (up to 55%). No children drowned in the Canal District during the study period. The majority of those who drowned in the Canal District (67%) were not official inhabitants of Amsterdam (e.g., tourists and homeless people.) When do people non-fatally drown in Amsterdam? Forty-seven percent of the non-fatal drownings in the Canal District occurred on Saturday and Sunday nights between midnight and six o’clock in the morning. No specific hot times could be defined for other parts of Amsterdam. Where do people non-fatally drown or drown in Amsterdam? Compared to the non-fatal drownings, there are fewer drowning casus in the Canal District than in other parts of Amsterdam. Given the high number of non-fatal drownings and the remaining drownings in the Canal District, further prevention is necessary and should focus on hot times and hotspots. Additional measures must be taken to enable those who fall into the canals to climb out.

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