Unfortunately, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) over 4,000 people lose their lives every year in drowning accidents in the U.S. Thousands of others suffer swimming pool related injuries annually. In fact, nearly 5000 people were seen in emergency rooms annually due to swimming pool injuries in each of the last several years, demonstrating the risks involved in swimming activities.
The number one cause of fatalities in children between the ages of 1 and 4 is drowning. Sadly, hundreds of children lose their lives each year to swimming pool and spa accidents in residential and public swimming pool areas. Non-fatal drowning injuries can cause severe brain damage often resulting in long term health issues that can represent a hardship to families, emotionally and financially.
Many factors contribute to the risk of a drowning accident such as non existent or sub par swimming skills, the lack of barriers or fencing around pools, lack of adult supervision, alcohol or drug use, lack of safety equipment or even a medical condition. Other risks include circulation entrapment where a swimmer becomes trapped by suction around the drain of a pool. Spine and head injuries are common after a diving accident as well.
Preventing drowning accidents begins by teaching children basic safety skills around the pool. Kids should learn how to swim and continue to develop swimming skills as they grow. They must understand the rules for using the pool such as always asking for permission from an adult and waiting for supervision before entering the pool area. If children are swimming at a public facility, they should swim only in the presence of lifeguards and follow all safety rules. They should understand the hazards to avoid such as drains, pipes or other openings where they might become entrapped and also where it might be unsafe to dive.
Parents, pool owners and those who run public aquatic facilities should have appropriate equipment for a pool or spa including fences and self-latching gates at a minimum. It is a good idea to have a plan to respond to an emergency such as learning CPR, knowing exactly where emergency shut off buttons are located and, and having a cell phone handy to call emergency responders quickly if help is needed.
Iowa Swimming Pool Drowning & Injury Lawyers
Providing children with swimming instructions and make them aware of safety rules around the pool and spa will help to prevent fatal accidents and injuries from occurring. If you or a family member is injured in a swimming pool or spa accident at a private residence or a public swimming pool, contact the Davenport personal injury law offices of McDonald, Woodward & Carlson PC for immediate assistance at 563-355-6478.