Few summertime activities are more exhilarating yet relaxing than a weekend afternoon in a vibrant blue swimming pool. Under certain conditions, however, pools can be extremely dangerous, especially to young children. An estimated ten people die from accidental drowning every day in the U.S.Â Drowning is the second-leading cause of death among American children under the age of 15, and even if there is no fatality, victims can suffer serious and even permanent injuries.
Traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries
Swimming accidents injure thousands of adults every year. They dive into water that is deceptively shallow and hit their heads, or slip and fall in the pool area, which is typically wet from dripping bathers, splashed water, and even sunscreen or tanning oil spilled by other pool users. Some of these mishaps result in permanent brain damage and neurological problems that lead to partial or complete paralysis.
Drains with missing or broken lids are an especially dangerous hazard in swimming pools because they contain high-powered pumps that can literally pull and trap someone under water. There have been some especially horrific cases involving Jacuzzis with pumps so strong that organ damage resulted.
Pool injuries also result from chemicals. Strong chemicals are used to clean the pool area and rid the water of contaminants. When a higher than recommended dose is added to the water, swimmers can suffer serious burns. Accidental ingestion of the water can also cause life-threatening internal damage. If the chemicals are not properly stored between each use, fumes can escape and cause respiratory damage.
Pool safety involves multiple responsibilities from different parties.
- Owners of private pools have a responsibility to keep their properties safe and free from dangerous defects, such as broken drain lids and diving boards, improperly stored chemicals, and cracked pool decking that people can trip on.
- Owners and managers of public pools are also required to keep their premises safe for the public. These facilities should also be fenced, have plenty of signage to educate users on pool safety and be locked after hours to prevent unauthorized access.
- Manufacturers of pool accessories and components, such as drains, slides, and diving boards, are obligated to supply safe products.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a swimming pool accident, contact a New York personal injury attorney today. They will help you examine what happened, identify the party or parties at fault, and seek compensation to assist you with medical expenses, loss of income and future earning potential as well as damages for pain and suffering and wrongful death (if applicable). Your attorney will protect your right to a fair settlement while holding the negligent party responsible.