Swimming is a great way to cool down and have fun during Baltimore’s hot summers. But while swimming pools are in high demand, they can also be very dangerous. There is a risk of serious injury or even accidental drowning, especially for young children. Accidents can occur in backyard swimming pools, public swimming pools, gym pools, hotel pools, or any other kind of pool where dangerous conditions are present.
If you or your child was injured in a swimming pool accident, or if a loved one drowned in an accident, Rice, Murtha & Psoras can help you understand the legal options that may be open to your family. You could have a personal injury claim or wrongful death lawsuit against negligent lifeguards, pool owners, or others. Our Baltimore pool injury attorney may be able to help you recover financial compensation. For a free legal consultation, contact Rice, Murtha & Psoras online, or call (410) 694-7291 for 24/7 assistance.
Swimming Pool Injury + Drowning Statistics
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), roughly 10 people drown every day in the United States. About 20% of these victims are children below the age of 14, with even higher numbers of non-fatal injuries. As the CDC reports, “For every child who dies from drowning, another five receive emergency department care for nonfatal submersion injuries.” The CDC has also reported the following drowning statistics:
- On average, more than 3,500 people drowned each year during the period from 2005 to 2014, not counting fatalities from boating accidents. Boat accidents killed an additional 330 victims per year, approximately.
- Drowning is the number one leading cause of accidental death among children age one to four.
- The risk of accidental drowning is highest for African American children and teens from the ages of five to 19, who are over five times “more likely to drown in a pool than white children of the same age.”
What Causes Swimming Pool Accidents?
There are many hazards which can cause preventable swimming pool accidents, from defective products to inattentive lifeguards. Common yet avoidable dangers that can lead to pool accidents and injuries include:
- Broken glass or other hazards inside the pool
- Defective and dangerous pool toys, life vests, or swim floats
- Exposed wiring and electrical hazards
- Failure to clean or disinfect the water properly
- Failure to warn and lack of safety labels
- Lack of proper fencing or barriers around the pool
- Lack of proper safety gear or medical devices, such as functioning, readily accessible automatic external defibrillators (AEDs)
- Missing, inattentive, intoxicated, or inexperienced lifeguards
- Missing or inaccurate pool signs
Who is Liable for a Swimming Pool Accident in Baltimore?
Swimming pool accidents can occur for many reasons, from a lifeguard’s failure to spot a drowning victim, to unsafe devices being installed in or near the pool. However, while the causes of pool accidents vary, most involve an element of negligence: the failure to meet a reasonable standard of care, resulting in preventable death or injury.
If negligence led to your pool injury, you may have a claim or lawsuit against the negligent parties. Our attorney can investigate your accident to determine whether negligence occurred and who may be at fault, from careless lifeguards or maintenance workers to hotel chains or pool toy manufacturers.
Can You File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit for Accidental Drowning?
If you were the victim of negligence, you may be able to file a lawsuit for your swimming pool injury in Baltimore. If you are the spouse or family member of a drowning victim, you may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit. However, certain legal rules impact your ability to file. For example, if the victim was wrongfully killed, only certain individuals have the right to sue under Maryland law, with priority going to “primary beneficiaries” such as the victim’s parents, children, or spouse.
Important time limits also affect your claim. The state personal injury statute of limitations is three years, giving you a period of up to 36 months to sue from the date of your injury. The wrongful death statute of limitations is also three years in Maryland.
Types of Swimming Pool Injury Claims We Handle
We handle a wide range of claims involving pool injuries and drowning accidents. We can assist you with wrongful death or personal injury claims that involve injuries and complications such as:
- Bone fractures
- Cuts and lacerations
- Dislocated joints
- Dry drowning
- Internal injuries
- Severe bruising
- Soft tissue injuries, such as sprains
- Submersion injuries
Baltimore Pool Injury + Drowning Lawyer
If you were injured while swimming, or if a family member accidentally drowned, talk to our swimming pool accident lawyer in Baltimore. We may be able to help you get compensated for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses resulting from your accident.
We serve injury victims throughout the Baltimore area. To arrange a free legal consultation, contact us online today, or call Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291.