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Preventing Swimming Pool Accidents

Written by Ankin Law Office

The unofficial start of summer is just around the corner with Memorial Day a mere two weeks.  Summer in the Chicago area means picnics, bike riding, and swimming at the beach or in pools.  While swimming pools provide countless hours of fun for both children and adults, swimming pools can be incredibly dangerous if certain safety precautions are not observed.   In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drowning is the sixth leading cause of unintentional injury death for people of all ages, and the second leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 14 years

Children are often the victims of swimming pool accidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), with the CDC estimating that more than one-fifth of fatal drowning victims are children 14 years of age or younger and for every child who dies from drowning, another four children received emergency department medical care for nonfatal injuries.  Even those swimming pool accidents that do not result in death can result in long-term disabilities such as brain injuries, memory loss, learning disabilities and a permanent vegetative state, according to the CDC.

Common Causes of Swimming Pool Accidents

Some of the most common causes of swimming pool accidents include:

  • Inadequate lifeguard staff
  • Defective or inadequate safety equipment
  • Ineffective barriers
  • Defective pool drains and other entrapment hazards
  • Contaminated water
  • Lack of warning signs

How to Prevent Swimming Pool Accidents

You can help prevent swimming pool accidents by following a few key safety measures – whether a community or residential pool.   Swimming pool owners, including homeowners, hotels, resorts, schools, water parks and city public pool operators, are obligated to provide a safe swimming area by certain precautions to prevent swimming pool accidents from occurring, such as:

  • Installing a fence that is at least four feet high around the pool with self-closing and self-latching gates
  • Installing pool and gate alarms
  • Ensuring that pool drain covers comply with the latest safety standards
  • Maintaining pool covers that are in good working order

There are also things that you, as a parent, caregiver, or swimming, can do to help prevent swimming pool accidents when using a residential or community pool such as:

  • Do not leave a child unattended
  • Teach children water safety basics
  • Keep children away from pool drains and other entrapment hazards
  • Keep a telephone nearby
  • Learn how to perform CPR on both children and adults
  • Learn basic lifesaving techniques

If you or a loved one has been involved in a swimming pool accident, you may be able entitled to compensation through a premises liability or wrongful death lawsuit.  Contact the Chicago personal injury attorneys at Ankin Law Offices, LLC if you would like to receive more information on swimming pool safety.

Categories: Head Injuries