PARENTS and guardians will soon be charged for negligence if their children fall victim to drowning.
A directive was issued to investigators yesterday to review files and explore the possibility of charging parents or guardians for negligence.
Criminal Investigations Department director SSP Vakacegu Toduadua gave the directive because the increasing number of children drowning was alarming.
However, SSP Toduadua stressed they did not want to add extra grief to those who had lost a loved one through drowning but if given enough evidence to proceed, charges would be laid against those found to be negligent in their role.
Despite repeated advisories and warnings for the close monitoring of children, 25 out of 75 drowning fatalities in 2012 were children under 10 years.
"2013 has unfortunately seen the first drowning fatality involving a 12-year-old child and the police force is concerned that if the issue is not taken seriously, there could be a repeat of the tragic events of 2012 which we are trying to prevent," SSP Toduadua said.
"This is an issue that needs and warrants the support of all members of the public and the onus is especially on parents and guardians to teach and talk to their children about water safety."