Swimming Pool Accidents
When you live in a state nicknamed the “Sunshine State,” there is no shortage of swimming pools. In addition to the vast array of public pools and commercially operated pools at resorts and hotels, many private homeowners also have swimming pools in their backyards. Unfortunately, they can be extremely dangerous for young children or others who cannot swim. If you or a loved one has been hurt in a drowning or other swimming pool accident, the Pembroke Pines swimming pool accident attorneys at Cohn & Smith can help you bring a premises liability claim against those who may be responsible.Assert Your Rights against Negligent Swimming Pool Owners
Swimming pool accidents generally fall under the law of negligence. Under this principle, a person seeking financial compensation from a careless homeowner or business operator must prove four things: that the defendant owed a duty to the plaintiff, that the defendant breached the duty, that the accident was causally connected to the defendant’s breach, and that the victim incurred damages.
Most swimming pool accident cases are considered to be “premises liability” claims. These are a subcategory of general negligence, with a particular focus on the issue of duty. The duty of care that a property owner owes to a guest depends in large part upon the reason why the guest ventured into the area where the accident occurred. People with a business purpose (invitees) or social invitation (licensees) are afforded a much higher standard of care than trespassers.
With regard to invitees and licensees, the property owner must maintain its premises in a reasonably safe condition, and this generally includes the duty to warn of known dangers. Generally, the duty owed to trespassers is merely to refrain from intentional harm. However, when the trespasser is a child, there can be a higher duty in some circumstances because children may be naturally attracted to swimming pools.
Noting that drowning is the leading cause of death among Florida’s young children, as well as a significant cause of death for its elderly population, the state legislature has enacted the Florida Residential Swimming Pool Safety Act. Under the Act, residential swimming pools should have a safety feature such as a four-foot or higher barrier around the pool, a cover over the pool, an exit alarm on doors and windows that provide direct access to the pool, or doors that self-close and self-latch.
In addition to a premises liability claim, a person who is injured or loses a family member due to a drowning may also have a cause of action for product liability if the accident was caused by malfunctioning, defective, or unreasonably dangerous equipment. In such cases, the injured person or the victim’s family may file a product liability lawsuit against the seller or maker of the faulty equipment. seeking damages resulting from the manufacturing defect, design defect, or failure to warn.
In some instances, public or commercial pool owners may be held liable for injuries resulting from failure to warn of the dangers of diving in shallow water, slick surfaces that result in falls near the pool, or the absence of a properly trained lifeguard.Contact a Swimming Pool Accident Lawyer in Pembroke Pines
Swimming pools are dangerous, and there are many ways that innocent children and others can be hurt or killed when a property owner does not take proper precautions. Florida law requires accident victims to file a lawsuit within the appropriate statute of limitations, or else there usually can be no compensation. People who have been involved in a swimming pool accident or a slip and fall in the Pembroke Pines area can speak with an experienced Pembroke Pines swimming pool accident lawyer at Cohn & Smith. We have represented many individuals from communities such as Davies, Aventura, and Sunrise, among other cities. Call 954-431-8100 or use our online form to schedule a free appointment to discuss your case.