Mum claims tot was 'sucked into hot tub filter' on holiday

The filter which 'sucked' in Lucas Smith, 4, in the hot tub
-Credit: (Image: Kennedy News and Media)


A mum claims her family holiday ended in horror when her son was sucked into a hot tub filter in a freak accident - leaving him screaming in pain with his bottom stuck.

Lucy Smith was watching from the sidelines as her four-year-old son Lucas played with his cousins in the hot tub during a family trip away to Sheffield on Sunday, May 5. The 33-year-old instantly knew something was wrong when suddenly Lucas began screaming and when she was unable to lift him out she realised the tot was stuck.

Lucy, who lives in Barnsley, frantically called over her cousin to help pull Lucas from the tub, but were struggling due to the 'strong suction'. After an agonisingly long 15 seconds, Lucas was freed from the tub, but left with huge purple bruises across his bottom - which was bleeding profusely.

Lucy and her husband Jamie Smith, 36, rushed their son to hospital where doctors told the family the tot was lucky not to have suffered any internal damage to his bowel. The mum later found out the cap from the hot tub filter had come off - consequently 'sucking' Lucas' bottom into the filter hole.

Elijah Smith, 7, with his brother Lucas Smith, 4
Elijah Smith, 7, with his brother Lucas Smith, 4 -Credit:Kennedy News and Media

Doctors suggested that it was simply down to Lucas not having gone to the bathroom recently 'saved his bowels', as the suction pulled that out instead of his insides. Lucy, an assistant psychologist, said: "I was just stood at the side watching all the kids play when Lucas suddenly started screaming. I knew instantly something was wrong. I could tell something was really hurting him.

"I went over to him to pick him up and realised I couldn't pick him up. I started screaming and me and my cousin were just pulling at him trying to get him out. We couldn't get him out - the suction was so strong. After 15 seconds, which felt like a lifetime, we finally managed to get him out. I pulled his shorts down and expected his bum to be shredded.

"We were all shaking. It was terrifying. The suction was the perfect size for his bum."

Deep purple bruising immediately appeared across Lucas' bottom as Lucy and Jamie rushed their injured tot to Sheffield Children's Hospital A&E department.

Lucy, who is also mum to seven-year-old Elijah, said: "The doctor said she was really shocked how well he was. She said she was expecting there to be some damage to his bowel, which is what usually happens. She said it was good he needed a poo because the filter kind of sucked that out of him instead and we luckily were able to get to him really quickly.

"While we were gone, the family were all looking at the filter and realised the cap wasn't even in the hot tub, it was on the floor. At some point, it had come loose and maybe one of the kids had taken it out, we weren't sure. They tried to put the cap back on but all really struggled. They did eventually manage to get it back on. When the cap is off, the whole filter is basically exposed. His whole bum went into it and sucked it in."

Lucy said she feels 'very lucky' after the incident and is now warning other parents to remain vigilant of hot tub filters to prevent further accidents. She said "I feel really really lucky - it could've been so much worse. But as a parent the 'what if' is horrible. It doesn't bear thinking about what could've happened. We'd never thought of something like this freak accident happening.

"It left us all so shaken. I would tell other parents to always check where the filter is in the hot tub and make sure the cap is screwed on properly. You're talking about people's lives. Lucas kept diving in and putting his head under the water, it doesn't bear thinking about what could've happened. It could've been fatal. It would've been a different outcome if we weren't there.

"I think designs like that when the cap comes off the filter should be recalled. It's so dangerous."