A picture of an Australian child disappearing into the bright blue depths of a swimming pool has shocked parents around the world.
An image posted to CPR Kids Australia may at first seem like a typical shot of an empty swimming pool.
But a second image posted in the comments draws attention to a slightly darkened water stain, which is the only indication a child is underwater.
CPR Kids, which is run by a group of registered nurses, admitted the image of the almost invisible child was “hard to believe” – it proved how dangerous choosing the wrong color swimwear can be.
The organization assured that the picture had not been altered in any way and that the parent who originally took the photo shared it because the incident feels so incredible.
“One of the CPR Kids Educators was at a pool party…she asked one of the kids, who was wearing a light blue bathing suit, to swim down. The results shocked them,” the team said in the post.
A commenter also recalled the same phenomenon happening to her child when they went for a swim in a caravan park pool.
But while it can be shocking to watch your child seemingly disappear before your very eyes, CPR Kids says the frightening risk is the inability to determine if your child could be drowning.
In Australia, drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in children under the age of five.
And CPR Kids said a big part of fighting the “silent” killer is making sure your child is identifiable by wearing brightly colored swimwear.
“Avoid blue, dark or dull colors in children’s swimwear,” a warning advises parents.
“Opt for bright and colorful (swimwear) so they are easier to see.”
But what made the kid even harder to see was the fact that after a few hours of pool party fun, the pool water wasn’t crystal clear anymore.
“The (educator) … noticed how cloudy the water had become after using it all day,” they said.
“The cloudiness was probably due to sunscreen in the water.”
However, shocked parents wrote in the comments that it was difficult to find colorful swimwear for boys.
“Would be great if you could tell swimwear manufacturers that!” one person wrote.
“Once kids turn 7, it’s all blue/black/white.”
Another commenter noted that even children’s life jackets at water ski shops were phasing out the fluorescent colors in favor of popular camouflage prints.
CPR Kids warned that children can drown quickly, quietly, and at any time.
Jessica Julie recalled the horrifying moment when her child began drowning without her knowledge.
“[I sat]at the edge of the pool … and watched my little one play,” she said.
“A man sitting next to me watching his child jumped in to grab my child before I even realized he was struggling. My child never made a sound.
“I was within reach and my mind was distracted.”
Nurse and director of CPR Kids Sarah Hunstead told Daily Mail Australia that it is essential for parents to “actively supervise” their children when they are in or around the pool.
“When it comes to supervision, you always have to remember that while there are a lot of people around, they’re not necessarily looking at the kids,” she said.
“The ‘active’ is the most important thing.
“That means you’re not reading, you’re not on the phone, you’re not chatting with anyone else.”
Official advice from Royal Life Saving Australia recommended that when children are playing in the water, adults should allocate a specific “pool water” to monitor.
Originally published as ‘Invisible’: The shocking image worrying parents around the world