Swimming pools are ripe for accidents, and it becomes the responsibility of the property owner to keep their pool reasonably safe. Whether it’s the City of New York, an apartment complex, a hotel, health club, waterpark, or a private homeowner, swimming pool owners have a duty to the public. When this duty is breached, there can be deadly consequences.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every day about ten people die from unintentional drowning. Of these, two are children age 14 and younger. Unintentional drowning is the 5th leading cause of death in the United States. In addition to drowning, a near-drowning can cause permanent brain damage and disability. In the case of unintentional drowning in a swimming pool, a pool owner may be liable for negligence based on a number of different theories.
When a lifeguard is present at a pool, it can lull people into a false sense of security. If there are not enough lifeguards, if the lifeguards are improperly trained or distracted, or if the lifeguards are not positioned where they can adequately see all swimmers, the pool owner can be liable for any accidents that result. Inadequate adult supervision, by parents or camp counselors, for instance, can also be a source of liability.
A pool without an adequate fence or barrier around it can be hazardous. It is the responsibility of the pool owner to ensure that people, especially children, are protected. Unsecured fencing, broken gate latches, or broken doors, are all dangers that the property owner should be aware of and work to repair. Pool owners should also make sure that pool gates and doors are locked when necessary.
Broken Equipment/Lack of Maintenance
Broken slides, diving boards, and drain covers are situations that could lead to serious injury. A pool owner has a responsibility to maintain pool equipment in good working order. Pool owners should also be careful to maintain the water quality of the pool to avoid murkiness and unsafe swimming conditions.
Pool owners must use reasonable care to post appropriate signs on and around the pool to prevent potential harm to others. Signs warning swimmers that there is no lifeguard on duty and appropriate pool depth markers are all necessary to make a pool safe.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a swimming pool due to someone’s negligence, you should have an experienced attorney examine your case. At Bonina & Bonina, P.C., we have over 50 years of experience helping injured New Yorkers. Contact us online or call us at 1-888-MED-LAW1 to schedule your free consultation. Home and hospital visits available. Se habla espaňol.