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What are key considerations for home pool safety?

Having a home pool can be a lot of fun for the family whose home it is at and their friends. However, if pool safety is not taken care of, there can be dangerous accidents with corresponding premises liability. Correspondingly, it is important to address some questions about pool safety.

How prevalent are poll accidents?

Around 350 children under the age of 5 drown in pools every year. For children that age, drowning is one of the leading causes of death, second only to motor vehicle accidents. In addition to deaths, 2,500 children each year require emergency room treatment due to near-drowning incidents. Most of those incidents occur in backyard pools.

When do pool accidents happen?

Accidents often happen when the parent or other caregiver of the children is not around. The children, leaving the house on their own, are drawn to the water of the pool but not cognizant of the danger it presents. A single misstep, and they can be in the water, drowning and unable to save themselves while their parents are unaware of what is happening.

What safety measures can be taken?

No list of safety measures is comprehensive, and families with pools should review safety with experts before having a pool installed. Yet, there are a few considerations to start with. One of those is having a self-closing and self-latching fence around the pool. The fence should be at least 4 feet tall, and the latch on its gate should be out of the reach of small children.

Additionally, if the home itself is a barrier on one side of the pool area, all doors from the home to the pool area should have loud alarms on them so that parents will hear them if a child goes through the door unexpectedly. A power safety cover over the pool can help as well. It should be motorized and in place every time that parents are away from the pool. While these safety measures are a start, remember that there are many more that should be taken to prevent injuries and minimize liability.

Source: Consumer Affairs, "Swimming Pools - Safety Is No Accident," accessed June 09, 2017

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