As spring transitions to summer during the coming month, more people in Orlando and Winter Park will be enjoying swimming pools in their backyards, private clubs or public parks. Unfortunately, we are also entering a period when a high number of serious and fatal swimming pool accidents can occur.
Last September, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s Pool Safely campaign reported that at least 174 children ages 14 and younger died from drowning in spas or swimming pools between Memorial Day and Labor Day, including 112 victims under the age of 5.
Ten children ages 15 or younger drowned in Florida, which had the sixth highest total in the country.
The heartbreaking reality is that most spa and swimming pool accidents are entirely preventable. This is why we urge parents and caregivers to be careful at the pool this summer and take special precautions to help save and protect innocent lives.
Swimming Pool Safety Tips
The majority of public swimming pools have posted signs that warn visitors and guests about the facility’s rules and the safety precautions that must be followed.
Even in areas where no signs are posted, parents and caregivers can take action to minimize the risk of drowning by following these swimming pool safety tips:
- Never leave a child unattended when visiting a pool.
- Always designate a responsible adult that you can trust to keep a watchful eye on the children and who will not become otherwise distracted.
- Do not leave younger children in the care of an older sibling around a pool. Again, an adult should be the one who supervises the child.
- Enroll your children in swimming lessons at an early age or spend time teaching them to swim.
- Learn how to perform CPR on both children and adults (each requires a different skill set).
- Never let children go in a spa without a responsible adult. The water can get very hot, and with the jet making bubbles, it is much more difficult to see a child who may be caught or in danger.
- Teach kids to stay away from pool drains, pipes and any other openings in and around the pool so they do not become trapped underwater.
- Make sure your pool or spa has proper drain covers.
- Be sure to conduct routine maintenance and make repairs.
- Make sure your pool has at least a four-foot fence, with a latch or locking mechanism, in order to keep younger children out when unsupervised.
What Should You Do If You or a Loved One Has Been Injured at a Pool?
Any time an individual sustains an injury, experiences a near-drowning or becomes the victim of a drowning accident at a pool or spa, legal action should be taken.
In many instances, these types of injuries and deaths could have been prevented if reasonable precautions were taken by the private or public property owner. If negligence played a role in causing the injury or death, the at-fault individual must be held accountable.
Contact an Orlando accident attorney who will be able to review the facts surrounding the injury, identify who can be held liable and advise you on whether you may be eligible to seek damages.