Drowning is a major global public health problem which is amenable to prevention. According to the Global Burden of Diseases 2000 data, the number of deaths caused due to drowning is 449,000 people worldwide (7.4 per 100,000 population). The aim of this study is to derive a profile of drowning victims, to identify the successful drowning preventive measures that may be adopted or enhanced in Mangalore, a coastal Taluk of South India. Retrospective study of deaths caused due to drowning in an 11 years period between 1994 and 2005 was done by reviewing the medical records, the findings of which have been described later. Epidemiologic profiles of populations at risk and the contributing factors are highlighted while public safety measures are recommended.