A four-year-old boy who drowned at the National Aquatic Centre was not wearing armbands and could not swim, an inquest heard.
Logan Joyce of Wotton Bridge, Ashbourne Rd, Co Dublin, was found in the Lazy River section of the Aquazone at 6.30pm on July 22, 2012.
“I held his hand and called his name, asking him to come back,” his father, Michael Logan, said in his statement.
The inquest into the child’s death at Dublin Coroner’s Court heard how Logan went to the National Aquatic Centre with his father, brother Brandon, and sister Crystal, then aged six and seven. Mr Logan wept in the witness box as details of his son’s death were read.
“The three kids were very excited,” he said. “The four of us went into the Aquazone and the two older ones went ahead. Logan saw a blue slide and asked can we go down together. We had to go down one at a time. Logan was up and down a few times.”
Mr Logan said he left his children on the slides and went to use a surf board 7.5m away. He then went around the Lazy River attraction with his daughter — a 120m long feature with a depth of 1.2m and a current running at 3.2kph.
“The water was chest height and there was a current. I didn’t like it. I told her not to go back in,” he said.
Des Sheridan was at the pool with his two children. He said Logan approached his daughter and asked about her armbands.
“He said his brother had his armbands and he was learning to swim,” said Mr Sheridan. “I said ‘you are not to get into the water on your own’. He said he wouldn’t.”
Mr Sheridan was standing near the slides when he saw Logan face down in the Lazy River. He jumped in, alerted lifeguards, and handed the boy to a lifeguard. CCTV footage monitoring the Lazy River was not operational on the day investigating officer Sgt Joseph Delaney said. Logan was last seen alive in the wave pool area. “From the available facts, it would appear he made his way all the way around the Lazy River,” Sgt Delaney said.
Lifeguard duty officer Russell Ehbel, who has since left the National Aquatic Centre, said children under eight require direct adult supervision and flotation aids can be bought at reception.
Staff struggled to attach defibrillator pads because Logan’s skin was wet and resuscitation attempts failed. The boy was rushed to Connolly Hospital where efforts to save his life continued. “I pleaded with them not to stop,” Mr Logan said.
Logan was pronounced dead as a result of cardiac arrest due to drowning at 8.06pm by Dr Derek Hayden. The inquest was adjourned until November 27 due to time restraints.
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