Swimming Pool Accidents
Private and public swimming pools are generally used whenever the weather is warm. Because warm days are common even during Florida falls and winters, the state has a year-round risk of swimming pool accidents. Whatever their causes are, accidents can result in serious injuries to children and adults. If you or a loved one suffered a pool accident, contact the injury lawyers in Gainesville at Warner, Sechrest & Butts, P.A. for assistance filing a personal injury claim.
Children & Swimming Pool Accidents
According to the Centers for Disease Control, about one in five people who die from drowning is a child aged 14 or younger. Injuries and accidents can happen in a matter of seconds, often because of a lapse in supervision. Property or pool owners have the responsibility to maintain a safe environment for swimmers. This responsibility includes:
- Proper supervision;
- Adequate fencing and gates around the pool; and
- Maintenance of the pool structure.
Accidents can result in head and neck injuries, broken bones, brain injury due to oxygen deprivation, paralysis or death. After a swimming pool accident involving you or a loved one, a Gainesville personal injury lawyer with Warner, Sechrest & Butts, P.A. will investigate the accident and help you recover compensation to assist with medical and rehabilitation expenses.
Tips For Safe Swimming
Safe swimming habits shouldn’t be limited to your backyard pool. Here are a few precautions you and your children should take in and around a swimming pool, whether it is yours, a friend’s or public.
Know The Pool Rules
A public pool should have its rules posted in an area where patrons can see them. Private pools may or may not have posted rules, but swimmers and owners should:
- Always walk on the pool deck to avoid slipping on the wet surface;
- Keep the pool deck clear by placing pool toys and deck chairs in designated areas; and
- Have a first-aid kit and rescue devices near the pool.
Learn To Swim
Formal swimming lessons can protect children and adults from drowning, but they aren’t a substitution for supervision. It’s also helpful to learn CPR. The sooner CPR is started following a swimming pool accident, the better the chance of a good outcome.
Only Dive From A Diving Board
Diving or jumping into shallow water is a common way in which people get injured in swimming pools. A diving board usually indicates that the area below it is deep enough for diving.
Never Swim Alone
Children should never swim alone, but it’s best for adults be accompanied, too. It takes only a couple of minutes for people to drown if they don’t receive help following an accident.
Closed Gates Mean Closed Pool
Closed gates are meant to keep children, adults and pets away from the pool when it’s not in use. Florida law under Section 515, F.S. requires new residential pools to have fencing at least 48 inches tall around the pool’s perimeter. Gates must be self-latching with the release mechanism located poolside.
What To Do If Someone’s Injured While Swimming
If someone has been injured while swimming, ask if they’re okay. If they don’t respond, immediately signal to a lifeguard that help is needed or call 911. Use great caution before attempting to rescue an injured person by yourself. For their safety and yours, use the Reach, Throw, Go technique.
Reach For The Injured Person
Reach for the person from a firm and stable position, such as holding onto the pool ladder. If you’re too far away, have the person grab something that could be used to pull them to safety.
Throw A Flotation Device
Throw the person a flotation device, such as a safety ring attached to a rope.
Go To The Injured Person
Swimming toward the person should be a last resort if no trained rescuer is around. Bring a flotation device for them to grab on to. Despite the stressful situation, remember to document the events. This includes writing down names and contact information of witnesses and taking pictures of the pool where the accident occurred. Documentation will be exceptionally helpful if you, the injured person, or family members choose to contact personal injury lawyers after the accident.
Personal Injury Attorneys In Gainesville, FL
The personal injury attorneys at Warner, Sechrest & Butts, P.A. are here to help if you or a loved one suffered injuries in a swimming pool accident. We will examine the circumstances surrounding the accident and pursue compensation for the injuries. Contact Warner, Sechrest & Butts, P.A. today to discuss your case.