Public and private swimming pools are common in the Tampa area and across Florida. Unfortunately, these pools can become hazards when they are not properly supervised and maintained. Drowning is among the 10 leading causes of fatal injuries among Florida residents for all age groups, the Florida Department of Health says.
The owner of a swimming pool may be held responsible for accidents that cause injury or death in his or her pool. This includes pools at private homes, country clubs, amusement parks, or state, county or municipal parks.
The Disparti Law Group, P.A., can help you if you or a loved one has been seriously or fatally injured in a swimming pool accident. It all starts by contacting us and arranging a free consultation about your case. Simply contact us online or call our toll-free number today.
Children and Swimming Pool Accidents
Playing, exercising or relaxing in a swimming pool or a hot tub is great fun. However, it can also be a risky leisure activity. Drowning in a swimming pool is a real threat. Other accidents caused by near-drowning, slipping and falling on a pool deck or hitting your head while diving can also lead to serious injury.
Children are particularly susceptible to drowning or other swimming pool accidents and injury. Young children may not understand the danger of water or be unable to swim. Teenage children may overestimate their swimming ability.
The Florida Department of Health says 447 Florida residents of all ages drowned in 2011. Another 186 children ages 9 or younger nearly drowned and had to be hospitalized.
The lack of oxygen in a near-drowning accident can result in brain damage that leads to permanent disability and ongoing expenses for medical treatment, therapy and/or personal assistance.
Legal Responsibilities of Florida Swimming Pool Owners
Because of the dangers that swimming pools present, pool owners must comply with certain legal requirements. These include ensuring their pools are equipped with safety features such as:
- Fences or similar barriers of at least 4 feet tall with openings that are less than 4 inches wide and with self-latching gates
- Safety pool covers
- Exit alarms on doors and windows leading to the pool area in residential settings.
Homeowners also have a responsibility for adequately supervising children who are using their pool.
The drains in swimming pools and hot tubs also are a potential danger specifically addressed by regulations. The suction created by defective or improperly installed drains can trap a swimmer under water, leading to a drowning or near-drowning. In some cases, the suction from a defective pool drain can cause bodily injury to soft tissue and internal organs.
Investigating Liability in Swimming Pool Accidents
In cases of a death or serious injury, those who have been harmed deserve answers and compensation for the expenses they face because of injuries and other losses. When an accident happens at a public or private swimming pool, it is important that an investigation determine what really happened and why.
Pool owners who fail to meet their responsibilities for keeping their pools safe or properly supervised can be held responsible for accidents that happen.
A lawsuit against a swimming pool owner would have to show that the property owner was “negligent,” or did not meet his or her responsibility to keep the pool and/or its users safe, and that the person bringing the lawsuit (the plaintiff) suffered because of that negligence. This includes the pool owner’s responsibility to keep people, especially small children, out of the pool by erecting a proper fence, locking a gate, installing alarms and taking other steps
At the Disparti Law Group, we investigate drownings and similar accidents in pools on behalf of families or injured parties. Our goal is to secure compensation that will help our clients to move on with their lives.
Our Lawyers Help Swimming Pool Accident Victims in Tampa and Florida
If you have been injured or a loved one of yours has been injured or died in a swimming pool accident in Tampa or elsewhere in Florida, call the Disparti Law Group, P.A. today or submit our online form. If we can pursue a legal claim for you, we will work on a contingency fee basis. You won’t have to pay fees or costs unless you recover money.