So, Memorial just passed and it's the time of year when the kids are out of school for the Summer. This means that your kids will be spending a lot of time swimming in lakes, ponds, and pools. It is important to reiterate the dangers that water presents and how to avoid those dangers. Just this weekend, a young boy was swept away by the Brazos River after fishing near the bank. Tragedies like this one remind us why we need to be safe this Summer and understand the unpleasant possibilities of recreational activities near and in water.
Approximately 10 lives are lost every day due to unintentional drowning that is unrelated to boating. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 3,500 people die annually in the United States because of unintentional drowning. Many more are injured.
During the summer of 2014, Texas had the second highest number of pool and spa drownings involving children under the age of fifteen in the country. Twenty children lost their lives in pool and spa drownings in the state that year.1
Texas Pool Drownings Are Often the Result of Negligence
When children drown, it is often due to the negligence of their caregiver or the person who owns the pool. Children must be closely watched at all times when in or near water at an apartment complex, at a hotel, at other commercial buildings, or on private property.
As a parent, it is important to teach your child to swim and to respect the water. Additionally, you should expect that the person supervising your child should:
- Pay attention. This means watching the child closely. It’s important that the caretaker not talk on her cell phone, text, browse Facebook, or even read a book.
- Know how to swim. It’s important that the caretaker know how to save someone who is drowning.
- Know what drowning looks like. Drowning may not involve the noise and splashing often seen in the movies and on TV.
A child who is struggling in the water may be saved if an adult acts quickly. However, a distracted caregiver may not see a drowning child in time to save him. The failure of a caregiver to provide adequate supervision can result in significant harm to the child, and felony charges could be filed.
Additionally, property owners have a responsibility to help prevent drownings. Specifically, it is important for property owners to:
- Make sure there is a fence four feet or taller around the pool. The fence should have self-closing and self-latching gates.
- Install alarms in the pool area. Pool and gate alarms can alert caregivers when kids go near the water.
- Ask a pool service professional to make sure drain covers are safe. The powerful suction of these drains can quickly catch hair or hold a child down.
- Make sure the pool water is clear, so caregivers can easily see swimmers underwater. Water that is murky or cloudy contribute to nearly 10 percent of drownings.
These safety precautions may help prevent child drownings and family tragedies.
What to Do If Your Child Is the Victim of a Texas Pool Drowning Accident
Nothing will ever alleviate your grief if your child is hurt or died in a pool accident, but you have the right to pursue a civil justice case. In order to get justice, you want an attorney who will fight for your family and hold the negligent caregiver accountable. Start a live chat with us today to schedule a free consultation. Let us help your family get the justice you deserve.