Because Southwest Florida is in a fortunate geographical position, the region is blessed with warm weather and sunny skies even in the winter when the rest of the USA is shoveling snow and lighting fireplaces. This has dramatically opened up the possibilities for Florida Suncoast residential property, and it’s not unusual for many homeowners to indulge in the dream of having their very own swimming pool.
Unfortunately, swimming pools, while attractive and fun, can also be a trouble spot for injury. As unbelievable as it may be, the #1 cause of death for American children between the ages of 1-4 is drowning. It usually occurs in a swimming pool. But there’s more than one way for swimming pools to pose a danger to people and not just children.
Diving is a common activity in swimming pools, but due to the way water distorts images, it’s easy to misjudge diving distances. As a result, injuries have occurred when people either miscalculate—or simply don’t bother to check the depth of water first and dive into a shallow area.
Concussions, bruises, and even broken limbs can result from people diving without realizing they are about to collide with a hard, unyielding surface just below the water.
Slipping & Falling
This is perhaps the most common way for people around a swimming pool to sustain an injury. A swimming pool is a place for recreation, so people relax, let their guard down, and engage in horseplay and other activities. While it might be viewed as ruining fun to have signs posted or verbally warn people not to run around a swimming pool area, there’s an important safety reason for this.
Water is, by nature, slippery. Depending on where it lands and the angle of impact and speed a foot lands on a pool of water, it’s very easy to lose traction. Young children and the elderly are more delicate than adults in the prime of life, and these slips and falls can easily lead to broken bones and lacerations.
Pool Drain Mishaps
In order to manage water levels and keep things safe for swimmers, water flows through drains so it can be properly filtered. However, depending on the type of pool drainage system used, the suction on these drains can be powerful. So powerful, in fact, that while an adult may be surprised to get “stuck” to a pool drain, it can be dangerous for children.
For children, pool drain accidents have involved suction incidents so strong that internal organs have been damaged as they were sucked through the anus. While surprising and something few people would predict, these injuries have occurred and have threatened the lives of the accident victims.
Of course, the most well-known hazard of swimming pools is drowning. Children, in particular, are vulnerable to this if they don’t yet know how to swim, and are allowed, unsupervised near pools. Therefore, it is universally recommended that children never play in a swimming pool without adult supervision. Failure to do so can be considered an illegal act in a court of law if it results in an injury or even a death.
Contrary to what most people think from film and television, someone drowning is not always indicated by someone splashing at the surface and screaming for help. In some instances, children have drowned surrounded by people because people thought the child was “just playing.”
If you or someone close to you in Southwest Florida has been injured in a swimming pool because of someone else’s negligence, seek legal help. Talk to a swimming pool accident lawyer about your accident to understand how to take those responsible to task.