Cool Dips, Nasty Slips, and Drowning

Warmer weather and cool waters beckon winter weary visitors to take a swim and relax in Nevada’s many sun-drenched swimming pools. Homeowners, hotels, and public facilities owe a duty of care to their guests to ensure that they are not injured during their swim. This doesn’t always happen and it is estimated that 10 people every day die in drowning accidents and nearly 5,000 every year are injured across the country.

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Swimming Pools and Drowning

Children are at greatest risk of drowning in a swimming pool, and approximately 76% of drowning victims are children under the age of 5 years old. Of these, 67% are children under the age of 3 years old. For young children, the leading cause of drowning deaths is inadequate supervision while the child is swimming.

Private pools are particularly dangerous for teenagers. 75% of drowning deaths of children under the age of 15 occur at private residences. Of these, 17% occur in above ground pools, 74% happen within in-ground pools, and the remaining 9% happen in portable, “kiddie pools.”

Treating Swimming Pool Injuries

47% of swimming pool injuries to children occur at public pools. These injuries include broken bones from slips and falls, as well as traumatic brain injury caused by either blunt impact in a fall or because of oxygen deprivation.

50% of drowning victims who require emergency room treatment also require further hospitalization to recover from their injuries.

Intentional Acts

Intentional acts are defined as knowingly doing something, or neglecting something that would make the pool inherently dangerous to use. For example, intentional acts could include failing to fix faulty equipment such as filters, failing to replace or repair broken ladders, not maintaining flooring surfaces, not installing non-slip flooring, failing to properly supervise pool visitors.

Other intentional acts could include failing to provide or maintain emergency safety equipment such as flotation rings, fire extinguishers, light fixtures, etc. In many cases, neglected maintenance of the pool facility or safety equipment are the reasons visitors to swimming pools become injured. In addition to civil law, pool owners and operators who commit intentional acts that make the pool unsafe to use may also face criminal penalties.

In Nevada, a premises liability lawyer can help the parents of children who have been injured or killed in a swim pool incident. An attorney can help identify and document the chain of events and actions that caused the incident to take place.

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