Florida Pools And Personal Injury
Summertime in Florida is exceptionally hot, with temps regularly reaching more than 100 degrees. Even the winters here can be very warm, which is why beaches are constantly filled up with people and why you'll see swimming pools everywhere. A recent accident at a Florida pool made headlines when a pool pump wasn't grounded properly, leading to a situation where multiple people including children were electrocuted while swimming in it.
While that's obviously a rare occurrence, pool related injuries and fatalities are all too common. There are several things that you'll need to consider if you or a loved one was injured in a swimming pool related accident – or if you're a pool owner who wants to understand more about your responsibilities where personal injury is concerned. About 5,100 pool related accidents occur each year, and since most pool drownings involve kids between 1 and 4 years old, safety is incredibly paramount where pools are concerned.
Most pool accidents are slip and falls or drownings – the electrocution incident is a rarity, but does happen from time to time. Under Florida law, pool owners need to follow some key guidelines, even if their pool is private and in their backyard for their own personal use.
- Pools built after 2000 must have a barrier of at least 4 feet high surrounding the pool.
- Locking devices must be on gates and doors.
- Alarms need to be installed on access points leading to the pool as well
Additionally, those who own pools that are used by the public – hotels, swim clubs, and public pools, to name a few – will need to take additional precautions. This includes installing warning signs about running, slipping, falling, diving, and drowning. If no lifeguards are present, signs must also announce this to those using the pools.
Swimming pools fall under the 'attractive nuisance' guidelines of injury law. This means that by having a pool on your property, you must take all of the above steps to protect yourself and the public. If an injury occurs in the pool and those basic requirements aren't in place, a legal case may exist.
This means that if you own a pool and a neighborhood kid sneaks a swim while you're away and is injured, you could be held liable if you didn't meet all of the precautions above. The mere fact that the pool is so attractive means that additional safety steps must be taken by owners.
A lot of different injuries can occur in a Florida pool. From injuries diving into shallow water to falls on the surface surrounding the pool to drownings, there are far too many potential hazards to name here. The specifics of each case will be different, so it can be hard to determine just whether or not you have the right to pursue legal action.
As a result, if you're injured you'll want to speak to a personal injury lawyer. They can help you determine what rights you have and whether or not your case is strong enough to seek compensation. If it is, they'll be able to represent you and help you get the kind of settlement you're owed.
Our law offices have more than 100 years' experience in personal injury law, and we have experience in pool related accidents as well. With offices in Sarasota, Venice, Bradenton, and throughout the state, we're close by to you no matter where you are. Each year we help our clients settle for millions of dollars in damages, so don't hesitate to contact us for a consultation if you or a loved one has been injured in a pool related accident.