Common Swimming Pool Injuries
Swimming pools and summer go hand in hand. Unfortunately, however, pools often harbor hidden dangers, especially for children. Hotels, resorts and other entities that make pool facilities available to customers or the public at large have a high duty to keep those facilities in good repair and to warn against dangers that are otherwise unavoidable. When pool owners and managers fail to do this and injury results, they must stand accountable for those injuries.
There are numerous ways in which patrons can be injured by unsafe conditions at public swimming pools:
- Head and neck injuries from diving into unmarked shallows
- Slipping or falling on unmarked edges or stairs
- Becoming entrapped in unsafe drains or circulations systems
- Drowning or near-drowning due to poor supervision
- Sickening due to contaminated or improperly treated water
Public pools in Florida must be permitted by the Department of Health and are subject to certain statutory requirements. Permits must be renewed on an annual basis and applicants must disclose the source of the pool’s fill water, the sanitation methods used and the safety equipment installed. Public pools must be equipped with safety features on their recirculation systems that prevent entrapment and all lifeguards must be certified by the Red Cross, YMCA or other recognized aquatic training program.
A violation of one of these regulations can be very compelling evidence of negligence on the part of the owner or operator of a public pool. However, such a violation is not required for liability to attach. As proprietors of public accommodations, public pool owners and operators have a high duty to keep their premises safe and well-maintained and may be liable for failing to do so even in the absence of an actual statutory violation. An experienced Fort Lauderdale premises liability lawyer can closely review the facts to determine if they can support a case.