San Diego Swimming Pool Accident Attorney
Swimming pool accidents and drownings are unfortunately a common occurrence. They can happen in or out of the water. Tragedy can quickly strike in the unlikeliest of places and change the lives of those injured in an instant.
Swimming Pool Drowning Statistics
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that approximately 500 children under the age of five drown in swimming pools annually. An additional 3,000 children are treated in hospital emergency rooms annually for injuries sustained in near-drowning events. In addition, swimming accidents cause the second most deaths in the United States for children in the same age group, preceded only by automobile accident related deaths). In California, swimming pool drownings exceed all other causes of death to children fourteen and under.
Statistics also show that there is an increased danger when the victim is familiar with the particular swimming pool. It is estimated that approximately 65 percent of swimming pool and drowning events occur at a relative’s residence or the home of the victim.
Near Drowning Events and Other Swimming Pool Injuries
Near-drowning events can result in devastating consequences. Statistics suggest that for all children that survive a near-drowning, 5-20 percent suffer severe and permanent neurological disabilities since brain damage. These life-altering injuries may require a variety of medical expenses such as surgeries, medications, and visits to specialists. In many cases the victim requires lifelong medical assistance. The same legal theories that apply to swimming pool drownings (premises liability, negligence, and products liability) also apply to near drownings. These types of personal injury cases are often complex and may require the use of numerous experts and accident reconstructionists.
Other injuries associated with swimming pools are diving accidents, slips, trips, and falls and injuries from pool chemicals.
Under California law, owners and property managers are required to protect all pool visitors from many of the inherent dangers associated the use of a swimming pool. These regulations include:
- Minimum fence height protecting the property
- Clean and safe water
- Supervision of other pool guests
- Properly maintained diving boards and slides
- Accurate water depth markings
- Proper hazard warnings
When a residential, school, athletic club, public authority, or other swimming pool operator fails to take reasonable safety measures to avoid injury or accidents, the injured party, or family of an injured party may bring a personal injury claim against the individual or entity for negligence, premises liability or under another legal theory.
Damage awards secured through a premises liability claim can help restore the victims of these accidents both financially and emotionally. These awards also function to hold the negligent parties accountable for their actions or inactions. In the wake of a tragic swimming pool accident resulting in injury or death, retaining a competent swimming pool injury attorney is a critical first step.