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Swimming pool and drowning accidents

In Florida, swimming pools are plentiful and residents often flock to pools to cool off and have some fun. For children, swimming pools provide a great place to play and get some exercise; however, they also pose serious dangers.

Many people may be surprised to learn that more children die annually in the U.S. from accidental drownings than from any other cause. Every year, hundreds of children die in the U.S. in swimming pool and spa accidents and drownings. During 2014, Florida led the nation for, at 50, having the highest number of reported swimming pool-related deaths for children age 14 and under.

In addition to accidental drowning deaths, annually, thousands more children are rushed to emergency departments across the country for treatment of swimming pool injuries and near drownings. From 2011 to 2013, the majority of child victims were age five and younger and most accidents, 47 percent, occurred at a private residence while 27 percent occurred at a public pool or spa.

When playing at or near a pool, parents or supervising adults would be wise to stay close to a child at all times. It only takes a few minutes for a child to drown and near drowning accidents may result in a child suffering permanent and life-altering injuries including brain damage.

In cases where a child suffers a serious or fatal injury at a public pool, numerous factors must be closely investigated. In cases where a pool lacked appropriate or adequate safety equipment, supervision or proper drain covers; negligence may be a factor. An attorney who handles premises liability claims may be able to assist in the recovery of damages related to past and future medical expenses, disability and long-term care needs.

Source: U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, "Drowning Deaths and Injuries Infographic," March 19, 2015

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