For many people, swimming pools mean relaxation, fun, and time splashing with friends or lounging by the pool. But the fun can quickly turn to tragedy when someone is injured or killed in a swimming pool accident.
When someone is injured or dies in a swimming pool accident, the effects can be devastating. You need an experienced swimming pool accident lawyer on your side who will help you manage the legal and emotional effects of a swimming pool injury or drowning.
Swimming pool injury lawsuits are covered by premises liability law, which says that the owners of a swimming pool are responsible for injuries that occur. In cases of swimming pool injuries and pool drowning deaths, the property owner has a duty to ensure that the swimming pool is safe for users and anyone else on the property. Swimming pool owners have a duty of care to anyone who enters the property, including people who are trespassing. Property owners can be held liable for injuries caused by a dangerous or hazardous condition on the property that the property owner knew about or should have known about.
Common Causes of Swimming Pool Injuries and Swimming Pool Drownings
Common causes of swimming pool injuries and drowning accidents include:
- Slipping and falling into or around a swimming pool
- Injuries or wrongful death caused by drain suction or entrapment
- Diving injuries
- Lack of or inadequate fencing
- Lack of warning signs
- Negligent supervision
- Negligent maintenance
Property owners are required to post signs warning swimmers of potential dangers, including signs indicating the depth of the pool and, when there is no lifeguard present, a “swim at your own risk” sign. Even if the signs are hidden or unreadable and an injury or drowning occurs, the property owner can still be held liable.
Pool owners can be held liable for failing to properly supervise guests, especially children. Property owners who fail to maintain the pool and surrounding areas in a safe condition, fail to provide safety equipment, or fail to properly maintain safety equipment can be held liable in a swimming pool injury lawsuit or drowning accident claim.
Swimming pool owners are required to install barriers or fencing to restrict access to the swimming pool. Fencing must include a functioning gate and latch to prevent access by children, who are naturally attracted to water.
Swimming pool owners are required to install barriers or fencing to restrict access to the swimming pool. Fencing must include a functioning gate and latch to prevent access by children, who are naturally attracted to water. Swimming pools must also have life-saving equipment on hand at all times. This includes a 12-foot long body hook and a throwing rope attached to an approved ring buoy.
Swimming pools must be well-lit so that all areas of the pool are clearly visible. They must also be inspected for compliance with safety and water quality standards and to identify hazards like broken drains that can create a suction hazard.
Commercial property owners who make their swimming pools available to the public have an even greater duty to protect swimmers. If a lifeguard is present and negligently supervises swimmers, the lifeguard’s employer and the property owner can be held liable for injuries or wrongful death. The pool owner can also be held liable if there is no lifeguard on duty or if there are no warning signs.
Swimming pool injuries can be serious, and even fatal. In some cases, the cause of the accident is obvious. Other times, the cause of a swimming pool injury or death is less clear. In either case, an experienced swimming pool accident attorney can help by investigating the underlying safety issues that caused the injury or death.
Who Can Be Held Liable in a Swimming Pool Injury Lawsuit?
Owners of residential swimming pools, owners of private or commercial swimming pools used by members or guests, and owners of government property like municipal swimming pools can all be held liable in the event of swimming pool injury or drowning death. This includes government entities that own municipal swimming pools that are open to the public, owners of hotels, campgrounds, health clubs, and apartment complexes, and owners of residential swimming pools.
Compensation for Swimming Pool Drowning
While no amount of money can make up for permanent injuries or the loss of a loved one as a result of a swimming pool accident, someone who was injured or a family who lost a loved one may be eligible for compensation that includes:
- Past and future medical treatment
- Lost wages
- Emotional trauma
- Pain and suffering
- Funeral and burial expenses
The experienced swimming pool accident attorneys at Robenalt Law are here to help if you or someone you love was hurt or killed in a swimming pool accident. Our lawyers will investigate the cause of the swimming pool accident, identify who was at fault, and fight for an amount of money that will compensate you and your family for the injuries, suffering, and loss that you experienced.
Tom Robenalt started his litigation career representing corporate defendants and insurance companies at a large firm in Cleveland. For the past 25 years, he has used that experience to help the families of people who have been injured or killed by the negligence of others.