Syrian refugee, 13, recovering after near drowning incident in Saskatoon

The incident took place at the Park Town Hotel’s swimming pool.

The incident took place at the Park Town Hotel’s swimming pool

Park Town Hotel in Saskatoon. (Victoria Dinh/CBC)

A 13-year-old Syrian refugee is recovering after a near drowning incident in Saskatoon.

The Open Door Society says the teenager is doing well right now.

According to MD Ambulance, emergency crews responded to the call at the Park Town Hotel's swimming pool early Monday afternoon.

The boy was transported to the Royal University Hospital in serious condition.

The Open Door Society said basic safety information is provided to newcomers staying at the hotel. There are still challenges because Open Door Society staff is not available at all times to translate.

They said they are adding more safeguards including more translated materials. 

Emergency vehicles arrived at the Park Town Hotel. (Victoria Dinh/CBC)

A coroner's report following the drowning of a Pakistani immigrant at a local pool in 2013 pointed to the need for enhanced safety programs for new Canadians.

The report said research by the Lifesaving Society of Canada indicates that immigrants and foreign students are four times more likely to be unable to swim than people born in Canada, which puts them at higher risk of drowning.