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Firefighters Help Revive Toddler Who Fell Into Pool

Firefighters Help Revive Toddler Who Fell Into Pool

The pool in which toddler Vincent nearly drowned

New York Daily News via YellowBrix

May 30, 2010

STATEN ISLAND, NY – A 14-month-old boy was hospitalized on Saturday after falling into a backyard swimming pool at his family’s home on Staten Island, officials said.

The boy, Vincent Fougere, somehow wound up underwater in the pool behind his house on Brehaut Avenue in Tottenville shortly after noon, the police said.

It was not immediately clear how long the boy had been submerged.

But Lt. Hector Morisi, who ran to the house with others from his firehouse, which is half a block away, said that one of the four or five adults at the house had said the boy was in the water for “between 30 seconds and a minute.”

“They did not mention how he got into the pool,” Lieutenant Morisi said — no one could say “if he walked in or stumbled in or crawled in.”

Lieutenant Morisi said that he and his colleagues had been outside the firehouse on Amboy Road when a man “sprinted up the block,” yelling, “There’s a baby drowning in the pool.”

Lieutenant Morisi, with Firefighter Matthew Gianone and three other firefighters from Engine 151, as well as two of their off-duty colleagues, grabbed some lifesaving equipment and ran toward the house. The lieutenant used his cellphone to call dispatchers for an ambulance.

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They got to the house within “10 to 15 seconds,” said Lieutenant Morisi. There, in the backyard, they saw Vincent, clad only in a diaper, lying on the patio. He was not breathing and he had no pulse.

The firefighters began performing CPR. Between compressions, they turned the child on his side to let the water drain from his mouth and nose, Lieutenant Morisi said.

The boy’s parents “were just crying and saying, ‘Not my baby, oh, my baby,’” said Lieutenant Morisi, himself the father of a 4-month-old boy.

As Vincent — who was born in March 2009 — was put into an ambulance, Firefighter Gianone, whose wife is expecting a child, got in, too, and rode with Vincent to Staten Island University Hospital North, “all the while doing CPR,” Lieutenant Morisi said.

“The child regained his pulse at the hospital,” Lieutenant Morisi said. “To my knowledge, at last report the baby was breathing.”

All told, the lieutenant said, the boy was probably not breathing for 10 to 15 minutes, between his removal from the pool and his arrival at the hospital.

The boy’s long-term prognosis was not clear.

“He’s still in the hospital, but the prayers are with him,” Lieutenant Morisi said. “The guys are very concerned.”