Pools are a major safety concern for parents. In fact, according to economist Steven D. Levitt, swimming pools are about 100 times more likely than a handgun to result in child fatalities. It is time to start treating swimming pools with due care to prevent drownings and near drowning incidents in Hollywood and across the country.
It all starts with how we look swimming pools. When we start taking the same care with swimming pools that we take with other risks, we can reduce the number of swimming pool injuries and fatalities. There are several things you can do if you’d like to play a role in reducing pool risks:
1) Encourage swimming skills.
Strong swimming skills can help prevent near-drowning accidents. If you don’t already know how to swim well, take lessons. Teach your children to swim early and send them to swimming lessons taught by a professional instructor until they can swim very well. Both adults and children can also take water safety lessons and basic CPR lessons to understand pool safety as well as first aid.
2) If you own a pool, make sure you protect it.
If you have a pool, make sure it is surrounded by a tall fence and a self-locking gate. The fence should be tall enough to keep out trespassers. Make sure there are no areas of the fence that can be compromised by using nearby patio furniture or other items to climb over. Every once in a while, walk around and check that the gate and entire fence are still in good condition and will act to keep intruders out.
Homeowners are responsible for their pools and owe a special duty of care to children. If minors enter a pool area and suffer injuries, the property owners can be sued in a premises liability claim in Hollywood or their community.
In addition to a fence and self-locking gate, there are additional precautions you can take. One of the best ones is an alarm system that will let you know if anyone enters your pool area. You can set up the system to automatically contact your phone or mobile device, so you will know about any trespassers even if you are far from home.
3) Have pool rules.
When using your pool, you can stay safer by having some pool rules in place. Some good rules to include are:
- Never swim alone
- Everyone out of the pool every twenty minutes
- No running near the pool
- No diving (or just from the diving board)
- No drinking and swimming
- An adult must be by the pool whenever anyone is swimming
4) Supervise pool time.
Even children who know pool safety rules may forget when they are having fun in the water. Always make sure pool time is well supervised, with at least two adults present.
If your child has been injured in a pool, contact Flaxman Law Group for a free, no obligation consultation. We can help you understand your options and we can answer the questions you might have.