The scorching summer weather in Texas drives many people in our state to use public swimming pools. However, there are also a higher number of swimming pool accidents during the summer.
Slip and fall accidents, drownings and even decapitations from swimming pool drains can harm swimmers. You may be able to file a premises liability or wrongful death lawsuit if you or a loved one suffered harm at a public swimming pool.
What Are Common Swimming Pool Accidents?
Swimming pool accidents can lead to brain injuries from oxygen deprivation or blunt force trauma, broken bones, spinal cord injuries and decapitations from drains that are not in compliance with the law. In some cases, public pool owners are liable for accidents that harm swimmers. Common accidents and hazards include:
- Slip and fall accidents. The surfaces around swimming pools are wet and may cause a slip and fall accident. Swimmers can also slip and fall from diving boards, which increases the risk of suffering a catastrophic or fatal injury.
- Drowning. Children or adolescents may enter a public swimming pool unsupervised, such as when it is closed or when a lifeguard is not on duty. In some cases, this can lead to fatalities caused by drowning. Brain injuries from oxygen deprivation are also possible.
- Diving accidents. Public swimming pools must alert swimmers to hazards, such as the risk of diving into shallow water. Diving accidents can cause a spinal cord injury, including a C1 spinal cord injury. This is the most severe type of spinal cord injury and can result in tetraplegia.
- Drain decapitation or drowning. Although rare, there have been cases of injuries caused by pool drains in the past few years.
- Sanitation issues. Unsanitary pools may harbor bacteria or parasites that cause death or serious injuries to swimmers.
- Electrocution. Light fixtures and other electronics may electrocute swimmers. In such cases, the pool owner or a product manufacturer could be liable for damages.
Texas Swimming Pool Regulations
There are multiple requirements Texas pool owners must meet to be in compliance with state and federal laws. For instance, the federal Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act requires pool owners to utilize anti-entrapment devices on drains. These devices prevent drains from causing drownings and decapitations.
Many swimming pools must also have lines that allow users to differentiate between the shallow and deep end. Class B pools must have a lifeguard and second responder. These are only a few of the requirements for swimming pools in Texas.
When pool owners are not in compliance with state or federal laws, and a lawful visitor suffers harm as a result, they can be liable for paying the visitor’s damages. Pool owners may also be liable for damages if they fail to provide safety equipment, lifeguard supervision or maintenance.
In addition, state law requires pool owners to warn people of hazards, such as warnings against diving in shallow water. Public pools must also have barriers that keep unsupervised children from entering the premises.
When Can I File a Lawsuit for Swimming Pool Injuries?
You may be able to file a wrongful death or premises liability lawsuit against the pool owner if you meet the following requirements:
- The pool owner owed you a duty of care
- The pool owner did not provide a duty of care
- The pool owner’s breach of this duty led to an accident that caused you to suffer damages
- You are within the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury or wrongful death claim
It is important to contact a Houston swimming pool accident attorney after a swimming pool accident. By filing a claim or a lawsuit, you may be able to recover compensation for your damages. This could include compensation for medical bills, rehabilitation expenses, funeral costs, and pain and suffering. Serious injuries can lead to millions of dollars in damages.
Contact Our Houston Swimming Pool Accident Lawyer
An experienced attorney can give you a better chance of recovering adequate compensation through a settlement or lawsuit.
The dedicated legal team at The Law Office of Daniel D. Horowitz, III PC can help you determine if it would be possible to hold a swimming pool owner liable for an injury or the loss of a loved one. Contact us for a free consultation by dialing (832) 460-5181 or by using our online case review form.