On Thursday, five pupils drowned in Central Vietnam after a group of children attempted to rescue a friend who fell into a reservoir, a local official said. The accident occurred when a group of eighth-grade pupils, about 14 years old from a secondary school in Nghe An province, were playing near a dam in Bac Thanh commune. One of the children fell into the water and four others tried to pull her out, but they, too, fell into the reservoir.
“All the four girls and one boy perished,” Tran Danh Luong, the chairman of the commune, said. Around 2,000 children drown every year in Vietnam, according to government statistics, making it the country’s leading cause of death among children under 15 years of age. Many kids do not know how to swim and since the beginning of 2019, at least 30 school-age children have drowned in Nghe an province alone.