Water safety review to be undertaken on stretch of Co Antrim river following death of boy (5)

Kayden Fleck (pictured on right) with his twin, Jayden. Picture by Pacemaker

A WATER safety review is to be carried out on a stretch of a Co Antrim river where a five-year-old boy fell in and later died.

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council confirmed the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) had been commissioned to carry out the review following the tragic death of Kayden Fleck.

The schoolboy and his twin brother Jayden had been playing near the Ecos Centre nature reserve in Ballymena when they fell into the Braid River last month.

Jayden was rescued immediately, but Kayden was swept for more than five miles downriver before he was pulled from the freezing water in a major rescue operation.

He was airlifted to The Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Belfast but later died.

His devastated mother Leanne has called for an increase in safety measures around the river following the death of her son.

She said she didn't want to "see this happening to any other family".

"To try and raise awareness because of the fact the housing estate is so close to the river and there's not that much gates or safety measures in place to prevent other children from wandering off into the Ecos on their own," she told the Nolan Show.

"I know they probably won't be able to fence the river because it's a nature walk, the paths are quite open but there is no gates or anything to prevent children from going into the area on their own.

"It's just for the council to have a look at it and see if they can put up some kind of higher fencing or gates around the area.

"Something terrible like this has happened, a life is lost and I know it's nobodies fault but there should be something that can be done.

"I don't want to see this happening to any other family.

In a statement, Mid and East Antrim Borough Council said "investigations into this tragic incident are ongoing".

"Council is continuing to work with the Health and Safety Executive of Northern Ireland and has commissioned RoSPA (The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) to carry out a full water safety review," a spokesperson said.

"Once this is completed, council will carry out its recommendations.

"Council is willing to meet the family to discuss their concerns."

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