Swimming pool accidents are tragically common in Columbus. According to the Georgia Department of Public Health, over 115 people die of drowning statewide every year. Not all of these deaths involve swimming pools, but many do – and many involve children.
These accidents can also lead to head injuries, brain damage, broken bones, and other serious conditions. If you, your child, or anyone in your family was injured at a swimming pool, you should know that you have rights. Speak to a swimming pool accident lawyer in Columbus from John Foy & Associates.
What Types of Damages Are You Entitled to in a Swimming Pool Accident?
In Columbus, GA, the local courts allow you to recover money for both the financial costs of the accident, and the non-financial losses you suffered. Financial damages you may be able to include in your claim:
- You or your loved one’s medical costs
- The costs of home care if needed
- Lost wages if you missed work
- If you will not be able to return to work because of your injuries, you can receive additional money for your loss of earning potential
Non-financial damages you can possibly be compensated for:
- Physical pain
- Emotional suffering
- Serious long-term health effects
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Unfortunately, some swimming pool accidents are fatal. If you lost a loved one, your family can recover many of these damages by filing a wrongful death claim. This may also include final expenses and a recovery for your own personal loss.
A financial recovery can never truly make up for what happened, but this money can make a huge difference for victims and their families.
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What Types of Swimming Pool Accidents Count as a Valid Claim?
Any type of swimming pool injury can be covered. It just depends on how the accident happened. If your injuries were sustained because of the negligence or carelessness of someone else, either the pool owner or a business, you have a valid claim.
The most common swimming pool accidents involve drowning. Many are fatal, while others involve a victim who was resuscitated. Unfortunately, even those who survive can come away with serious injuries like brain damage. Even though the person is resuscitated, the brain is not always able to fully recover from this temporary asphyxiation.
Risk Factors in Columbus Swimming Pool Accidents
Drowning is not the only way people get hurt at pools. Other common accidents include:
- Slipping and falling on wet pavement, a wet deck, tiles or a diving board
- Diving accidents including spinal injuries and head injuries
- Injuries involving drains, filters, grates or other equipment in the pool
These injuries are often preventable and many pools lack adequate safety measures, such as clearly labeling the shallow end and deep end, or using high-traction surfaces around pools. In many cases, there is a party who is liable for the injury.
There are other ways that both children and adults can sustain injuries in swimming pools and hot tubs. These risk factors include:
- Ineffective pool barriers
- Subpar swimming skills
- Shallow waters lacking proper signage
- Accidents using diving boards
- Accidents using slides
- Lack of supervision from lifeguards or adults
- Use of unsafe pool toys and accessories
- Excessive consumption of alcohol while using the swimming pool
- Negligent maintenance of the pool, drain covers, ladder, and other parts
Georgia’s public swimming pool rules and regulations require swimming pool owners and operators to build and maintain a fence of at least four feet high surrounding the swimming pool area.
The pool must be kept clean and in safe conditions, with reasonable safety measures in place to ensure that all pool users are protected. Your swimming pool accident lawyer in Columbus, GA, can hire investigators to take a closer look at the cause of your accident.
Who Is Liable for My Swimming Pool Accident?
Most swimming pool accidents in Columbus fall into one of three categories, which determine who is liable.
Premises liability means that the owner of the premises is liable because they failed to keep the swimming pool and its surroundings safe. No location can ever be 100% safe, but the owner or manager is expected to take reasonable precautions to look out for the safety of those who enter the premises. Examples include:
- No fence or barrier around pool
- Equipment such as ladders or diving board are in unsafe condition
- No warning signs about pool hazards
- Depth is unclear, or shallow end is not marked
Negligence occurs when someone is careless and their actions or inactions lead to an injury. In many cases this is the same thing as premises liability, because the owner is often the careless party. But there are exceptions. For example, any of the following parties can be liable:
- A maintenance company
- The company contracted to operate or oversee the pool
- A third party at the pool, such as an individual who pushed someone else, resulting in injury
In some cases, a pool accident is caused by a faulty or dangerous product. That means the company that made the product is typically responsible. This can include equipment such as:
- Drain systems
- Ladders and diving boards
- Pool toys
You won’t always know who the liable party is. The accident may have happened quickly and the property owner won’t always be forthcoming with information afterward. But a Columbus swimming pool accident attorney can get you the answers you need.
Working With a Columbus, GA, Swimming Pool Accident Lawyer
After being injured in a swimming pool accident, the first thing you should do after is seek medical attention. A swimming pool accident attorney in Columbus, GA, can guide you through legal processes for your case and manage your claim in several ways, including:
- Investigating the accident to determine fault and liability
- Collecting evidence to support your claim
- Totaling your damages and assigning your case a monetary value
- Gathering and submitting all paperwork to the insurance company
- Negotiating a settlement with the insurance adjuster
- If necessary, taking the at-fault party to trial
While you concentrate on recovering from your injuries, your attorney can handle your case. Many law firms represent on a contingency-fee basis; this means you are not required to pay unless you win compensation.
Swimming Pool Accident Attorneys Can Fight Back Against Insurance Companies
Hiring a law firm for your swimming pool accident or drowning case can help provide the support you need to secure the right compensation for your injuries and losses. While an insurance adjuster may seem to be working on your behalf, they are primarily interested in resolving the case quickly.
When you hire an experienced lawyer, a legal team will work on your behalf, not on behalf of the insurance company. Your attorney can help you fight for fair financial recovery and help you win your personal injury case because you deserve compensation based on the full extent of your economic and noneconomic losses.
Talk to a Columbus Swimming Pool Accident Lawyer for Free
It’s frightening how quickly a swimming pool can become the scene of a tragedy. You and your family are not alone. You have legal rights and you may be entitled to a financial recovery for what happened, including all your medical costs.
The Columbus, GA, swimming pool accident attorneys of John Foy & Associates can help you. For over 20 years, we have distinguished ourselves as one of the top swimming pool injury law firms in Georgia.
Our attorneys listen to swimming pool accident victims and their families, take the time to understand their specific case, and bring back results. Call us today for a free consultation.
706-400-4000 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form