When the weather heats up, a fun activity can be to head to a public pool or a private pool at a family or friend’s home in Norfolk. Unfortunately, guests face dangers of being seriously injured or killed if the pool’s owner does not take the safety of those using the pool seriously enough. Many of the victims of these tragic accidents are young children.
Causes of Swimming Pool Drownings
While any type of swimming pool accident can result in injuries, drownings can leave victims with catastrophic injuries, such as brain injuries or death. In order to hold the pool owner liable, a victim must prove that he was negligent. To establish this, he would need to show that the owner knew or should have known about a hazardous condition but failed to correct it or to post warning signs to alert guests of the danger.
There are many ways that a swimming pool owner’s negligence could have been the cause of a drowning:
- Inadequate supervision of children and other weak swimmers
- Defective swimming pool drains, which can lead to a suction drowning
- Failure to properly maintain the pool
- No markings to designate the shallow and deep ends of the pool
- Inadequate fencing or gates around the pool, which are required under the law
- Insufficient safety equipment
- Life guards who were untrained or not performing their job duties properly
- Inadequate lighting
- Overcrowding of the pool
Types of Drownings Caused in Swimming Pool Accidents
Many people do not realize that there is more than one type of drowning that can be caused by a swimming pool accident. All types of drownings can cause life-altering injuries or death. Here are three common types:
- Near-drowning. A near-drowning occurs when a person is rescued before he dies or he only survives temporarily.
- Wet drowning. This is the most common type of drowning where liquids flood into the lungs and cause damage. The drowning will be fatal if aid is not immediately provided to the victim.
- Dry drowning. Dry drowning is a rare type of drowning where no water gets into the lungs. Instead, the larynx closes and prevents oxygen from reaching the lungs.
- Secondary drowning. In a secondary drowning, the victim inhales a small amount of water but is resuscitated and appears to have recovered. However, the water can cause damage to the lungs and result in difficulty breathing and fluid buildup within 24 to 72 hours of the drowning.
Your Right to Compensation in a Swimming Pool Drowning
If a swimming pool owner’s negligence caused you or a family member to suffer injuries or death in a drowning, you could be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more under Virginia law. However, it is not easy to prove the owner’s liability to compensate you without the help of an experienced premises liability attorney. To find out about your legal options and how we can assist you, call our Norfolk office today to take advantage of our offer of a free initial consultation.