Seven-year-old Perth student Phoebe Van Niel hailed a hero after saving toddler at pool

Hero girl, 7, saves toddler’s life when she spotted the baby slipping silently into a public pool and jumped in to save her from drowning

  • Phoebe Van Niel, 7, heroically dived into public pool to save toddler that fell in
  • Year 2 Perth student was on holiday with her family to Broome in northern WA
  • Her mother Renae Van Niel is encouraging all children to get swimming lessons 

A seven year-old-girl is being hailed a hero after she dived into a public pool without a moment’s hesitation to rescue a toddler who could have drowned.

Phoebe Van Niel, a Year 2 student from Perth, was on holiday at Broome in Western Australia‘s far north-west with her family this month when she noticed the toddler had fallen in the water. 

‘She jumped into the big pool with no floaties. Well, she slipped in… She could of drowned and I didn’t want that happening,’ Phoebe told 9News.

Even though the pool was crowded, many people hadn’t noticed the toddler in the pool until after Phoebe had already dived in.

Phoebe Van Niel (pictured) dived into the public pool in Broome where she was holidaying with her family to save a toddler that fell in

Phoebe Van Niel (pictured) dived into the public pool in Broome where she was holidaying with her family to save a toddler that fell in

‘Initially there was a lot of panic,’ her mother Renae Van Niel said.

But she explained as people started to realise the toddler was in trouble, Phoebe had already made it to her, lifted her out of the water and was swimming back to the edge of the pool.

She added the toddler was ‘upset’ but otherwise fine. 

The little hero has done years of swimming lessons back in Perth which led her to be confident around the water, something her mother can’t recommend enough.

‘This is why it’s so important to go and learn to be a strong swimmer,’ she said.

Phoebe now says she wants to be a lifesaver when she grows up.

Her mother Renae Van Niel (pictured together) is encouraging all parents to get their kids swimming lessons

Her mother Renae Van Niel (pictured together) is encouraging all parents to get their kids swimming lessons

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