Swimming pools offer cool relief from the Texas summers and are a favorite activity for children and families. However, swimming pools do come with great risks. It is important for Fort Bend residents to understand the types of injuries that can occur in or near pools. And if warranted a qualified Sugar Land attorney may enable you to obtain compensation for your injuries.
Nine of the most common pool injuries are listed below.
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are nearly 300 drowning deaths involving pools and spas every year. Young children, in particular, are at a high risk of drowning. It is the leading cause of unintentional injury death in children ages one to four. Risk factors for drowning include subpar swimming skills, a lack of swimming pool barriers, overcrowded pools, a lack of supervision, and alcohol use.
- Near Drowning. In a near-drowning accident, the victim is submerged but survives the initial 24-hour window. Near drowning can cause brain damage due to oxygen deprivation and result in a coma, persistent vegetative state, or brain death. It can also cause deficiencies in memory, speech, attention, and motor abilities. Children between the ages of one and three represent 61% of estimated nonfatal drowning injuries. Proper supervision and securing pools with child-proof fences and locking gates can help reduce near-drowning accidents.
- Diving Injuries. Diving accidents commonly occur when a person jumps headfirst into a pool that is too shallow. Malfunctioning diving boards can also cause these types of accidents. Common injuries resulting from diving accidents include spinal cord injuries, concussions, traumatic brain injuries, lacerations, fractures, and soft tissue injuries. If the diver is knocked unconscious, they could drown. These injuries can be reduced with proper warnings, including signs that display the depth of the pool, and supervision.
- Swimming Pool Slides. Slide injuries most often occur when individuals fall off the slide, go down headfirst, or are dropped into shallow water. Sliding headfirst into shallow water can result in traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries. Precautions should be taken to keep pool slides from becoming too slippery or slick, and warning signs should be posted.
- Slip and Falls. Even if people are not running, they can slip and fall on the slick surfaces surrounding pools. Slip and falls can cause severe injuries, including traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, fractures, and soft tissue damage. Slip and falls can even result in drowning if the individual falls into the pool and does not know how to swim or is unconscious due to a head injury. To reduce slip and fall accidents, pool areas should be kept well-lit and free from tripping hazards.
- Electrical Defects. Malfunctioning electrical systems are especially dangerous when combined with a water system, such as a pool. Issues with a pool’s electrical components, such as pumps, lights, filters, and wires, can result in electrocution and seriously injure or kill and swimmer. Pool construction must follow strict regulations for the placement and use of electricity in swimming pools.
- Pool Drain Entrapment. To keep pools and spas clean, drains are installed as a part of the filtering system. If drains covers and suction outlets are damaged or not properly covered, victims can get their arms, legs, hair, jewelry, or swimsuit caught in the drain’s powerful suction. This can lead to entrapment and drowning if the individual is pinned underwater. Even if swimmers escape, they can suffer injuries, including disembowelment and amputation of fingers or toes.
- Pool Toy Entrapment. Inflatable pool toys can also cause entrapment injuries. Tangled or flipped inflatable toys can trap children underneath the water and make it impossible for swimmers to escape. Product manufacturers have a legal obligation to ensure their products are safe for their intended use. They must also adequately warn consumers about potential risks.
- Exposure to Pathogens. Pools should be properly maintained and regularly inspected for pathogens that cause serious illnesses. Even if a pool has proper chlorine levels, not all germs are immediately killed. Infections like Crypto and E. coli can occur, causing diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and dehydration. Individuals swimming in an unclean pool can suffer from respiratory, throat, eye, ear, and wound infections.
Your Fort Bend Pool Injury Attorney
If you or a loved one suffered a pool injury, you should reach out to a qualified Sugar Land attorney as soon as possible. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Adam Capetillo is a Fort Bend County native who will evaluate your case and provide the best possible representation. Call Capetillo Law Firm today for a free consultation.