The drowning deaths were predominantly seen in male (71.02%) with male: female ratio of 2.45:1, they were commonly seen in age groups of 21-30 years (27.84%) followed by 31- 40 years and 41-50 years. Predominance of male was seen in all age groups except below 10 years and between 50 and 70 years of age. These findings are consistent with that of Auer (1990), Quan (2003), Suresh Kumar Shetty and Shetty (2007), Pathak and Mangal (2009) and Saberi Anary et al. (2010). The probable reason behind preponderance of 21-30 years age group in drowning is carelessness and adventurous nature usually seen in youngsters while swimming or doing recreational activities in or around water source leading to accidental deaths. This is followed by the age group of 31-40 years, it may be due to familial and financial problems arising in life and their inability to deal with them.
As per marital status, 46.59% victims were married and 32.95% were unmarried. Among the females 56.86% were married and (25.49%) were unmarried, and among the males 42.40% were married and were (36%) unmarried. And remaining cases status is not known. It may be due to over exposure of married and working people in and around water sources leading to accidental deaths. Also they prefer to commit suicide by drowning due to inability to handle familial and financial problems. This finding is consistent with that of Gorea and Singh (2005), Ranga Rao et al. (2014) who found 38% and 50% married victims respectively who died of drowning.
Maximum number of drowning deaths had occurred in urban region constituting 57.38% cases followed by rural region constituting 42.62% cases. In urban region, the male (59.20%) drowning deaths are more as compared to females (52.94%), whereas in rural region the females (47.06%) drowning death are more as compared to males (40.80%). These findings are in contrast to study carried out by Delmonte and Capelozzi (2001) and Murkey et al. (2008), this may be due to different region of study. The present study was carried out in urban region in contrast to Murkey et al. (2008) and Delmonte and Capelozzi (2001) which was conducted in rural region.
The most common victims of drowning deaths were the student seen in 18.75% cases. It may be due to carelessness and adventurous nature usually seen in youngsters while swimming or doing recreational activities in or around water source. This is followed by non-working victims in 17.62% cases, farmers in 16.48% cases and labourer in 11.36% cases; it is probably due to financial and familial problems,
Hindu community contributes to maximum number of cases with 60.23%, followed by Buddhist in 18.75%; Muslim in 6.25%, Jain in 1.14%, Christian in 0.57% cases. In 13.06% cases, the religion of victim was not known. This is due to the predominance of the Hindu population where the study was carried out. Pathak and Mangal (2009) also found that 90.69% of the victims of drowning deaths belong to Hindu community, followed by Muslim community in 6.98% cases and Sikh community in 2.33% cases.
Depending on the socioeconomic status, most of the victims of drowning deaths belong to upper-lower class seen in 35.23% followed by lower class in 20.45% cases, lower middle class in 14.77% cases upper class in 6.25% cases. In 13.07% cases, the socioeconomic status of the victims of drowning deaths was not known.
21.02% of victims of drowning death had familial and financial problems. The second most common history associated with drowning death was depression seen in 20.45% cases. This is followed by chronic alcoholism in 18.18% cases and chronic illness in 17.61% cases. Male predominance was seen in almost all the associated history except psychiatric illness (7.38%) in which female (15.68%) outnumbered male (4%) in drowning death. The present study is in accordance with Dietz and Baker (1974), Auer (1990), Fralick et al. (2013).
The maximum number of drowning deaths occurred in rainy season (43.75%). This is followed by summer season 32.95% cases and winter season 23.30% cases. This finding is consistent with Pathak and Mangal (2009), Job (2009), Ambade et al. (2013) studies where maximum drowning deaths were found in rainy season.
Most of the drowned victims were retrieved from lake in 44.32% cases. This is followed by well in 34.66% cases, river in 8.52% cases, and pond in 5.68% cases. Most of the male victims was retrieved from lake (53.60%) followed by well in 29.60% cases, but most of the female victims was retrieved from the well (47.05%) followed by lake (21.56%) river in 11.76%. Rarely the body was found in swimming pool, water tank, canal (gutter) and water tub. The present study is in accordance with Patetta (1988), Bose et al. (2000), Quan (2003), Fralick et al. (2013) and Ranga Rao et al. (2014).
Summary and conclusion
In above study we concluded that, Male predominance seen in drowning deaths with highest incidence seen in third and fourth decades. Drowning deaths are most common in urban region followed by rural region. Students are the most common victims of drowning deaths followed by non-working, farmers and laborers. Drowning deaths are most commonly found in Hindu community followed by Buddhist and Muslims. Drowning deaths are most common in married people as compared to unmarried people. Drowning deaths are most commonly found in upper lower class, followed by lower class, lower middle class and upper middle class. Familial and financial problems is the most common history seen in drowning deaths followed by depression, chronic alcoholism, chronic illness and psychiatric illness. Drowning deaths are most common in rainy season followed by summer and winter season. Lake is the most common place from where the bodies were retrieved followed by well, river and pond.