Five children drowned when a group of six students went for a swim at a pond in Tinh Bien District in the Mekong Delta province of An Giang on Sunday afternoon.
The incident happened at around 1:00 pm, Phu Van Tuan, the Party chief and chairman of Van Giao Commune in Tinh Bien, confirmed on Sunday night.
The group of children included Neang Soc Na, Neang Chanh Tha, Neang Na Ry, Neang Net, Chau Chanh Det, and Neang May, aged between two and 13 years old.
The pond that the children swam covers a total area of over 1,000 square meters and measures two meters in depth at its deepest point, according to a local police officer.
The pond was formed after a construction unit dug up the ground there to mine for soil.
None of the children could swim, the officer added.
People found Na, Tha, Ry, Net and Det drowning at around 2:00 pm on the same day and rushed them to Van Giao Commune’s clinic, but the five children had passed away.
|People gather near a pond where five children drowned in Van Giao Commune, Tinh Bien District, An Giang Province, Vietnam, September 13, 2020. Photo: Buu Dau / Tuoi Tre|
The An Giang Department of Education and Training sent a delegation to the deceased children’s houses to pay condolences to their families after the incident.
The local police are investigating the case.
After the incident, An Giang’s chairman Nguyen Thanh Binh said that the provincial People’s Committee will direct the education department to give children swimming lessons to help them understand the danger of going swimming without adults’ supervision, and require stricter management on children going swimming from both the local authorities and families.
More than 2,000 children drown in Vietnam each year, according to figures quoted by Vu Thu Kim Hoa, vice-director of the children department under the Ministry of Labor, War Invalids, and Social Affairs, at a meeting in Hanoi in November 2019.