Hotels have a responsibility to guests to ensure the premises is reasonably safe for guests. Failure to do so is a form of premises liability. Swimming pools are a major attraction at any hotel, especially in Florida, so extra care must be given to ensuring it as safe as possible, and that warnings are posted of hazards that aren’t obvious.
According to a recent report from Fox 2 Now, a 12-year-old boy from Florida was killed in a swimming pool accident at a hotel in which his family was staying. He was with his older sister and brother, who is a toddler, in the water at the time of this tragic swimming accident.
Authorities have said the child was swimming when he attempted to see how long he could hold his breath under water. His sister was watching their younger toddler brother at this time. He dived below the surface of the water and was there for around two minutes before his family saw what was occurring and pulled him out of the water. His father began performing CPR on his son until first responders arrived on the scene of the swimming pool accident. EMS workers took control of the situation and started performing CPR on the child, as the father had done prior to their arrival. They did their best to get him breathing and rushed him to a local level-one trauma center. When EMS is unable to get a person breathing with CPR, they will often place a tube in the patient’s mouth and into the airway in a process known as intubation.
Unfortunately, when the child arrived at the hospital, there was nothing doctors could do to save the boy, despite their best efforts, and they had no choice but to pronounce him dead shortly after arrival. They scheduled an autopsy because they have some questions about why the child was unable to return to the surface, but they are still fairly certain this was simply a tragic accident. It should be noted that there have been no formal accusations of negligence as of the time of this article.
Swimming pool accidents happen all the time. They can happen at a friend’s house, a public pool, while at camp, or even while at school. As our West Palm Beach swimming pool accident lawyers can explain, these accidents often happen when your child is in someone else’s care. If there was any negligent conduct that resulted in the injury or death of your child, you may have a valid personal injury case.
It is important to understand that, while drowning is the worst thing that can happen, it is far from the only way a person can be injured while at the pool. We have many accidents where a person slips on a pool deck and is seriously injured. We also have accidents where someone is injured on a diving board or slide. Additionally, we have seen accidents where someone jumped or dived into water that was too shallow. This can result in broken bones and even paralysis if there is a spinal injury.
The first thing that must be established, as this is a negligence case, is whether anyone owed a duty of care to plaintiff. A duty of care is a duty to act as a reasonable and prudent person so as to prevent foreseeable injury to foreseeable persons and property. If there is a lifeguard present, that person has a contractual duty of care. If a person agrees to watch your child, they likely have a duty of care, but certainly if they are the homeowner where the pool is located.
In this case, if there was some aspect of the pool that made it difficult for the child to resurface (i.e., a dangerous drain or something on which a body part became stuck), premises liability could come into play.
Call Freeman Injury Law — 1-800-561-7777 for a free appointment to discuss your rights. Now serving Orlando, West Palm Beach, Port St. Lucie and Fort Lauderdale.
Child dies while swimming in hotel swimming pool, May 16, 2017, Fox 2 Now
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Family Files Daycare Lawsuit After Baby Suffers Brain Injury, Feb. 27, 2017, Boca Raton Child Injury Lawyer Blog