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In these hot summer months it’s oh so tempting to take a dip and cool off, but pool owners beware for the dangers of the drink go far beyond bumps and bruises. You can be held personally liable for the injuries of those using your facilities. Among the leading causes of accidental death drowning comes in at number five. Small children especially are at of accidentally falling in and drowning. Because of this at the federal level pool safety regulated by the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act, which sets minimum standards for drain cover safety and other equipment in many pools. Many states added additional laws ranging from adding child resistant fences, to including warning labels as a result, pool owner liability vary from state to state. While private companies such as hotels and public entities such as the government can be held liable the focus for now will be on personal pool liability,
For normal guests that are invited in, the owner has the highest legal duty towards them, such as a party guest using your pool at your private home. It is assumed therefore that you will endeavor to make sure that those using the facilities are aware of any potential dangers and will seek to make sure everything is safely secured and in working condition. There is also the implied legal obligation to fix any broken equipment or facets to the pool that could cause injury in a timely and efficient manner. On the other hand if someone is trespassing on your property and is not a guest You are not; as a general rule responsible for their safety. The only duty to trespassers on your land is to avoid causing excessive injury. Unless you know that people regularly come onto your property and that your pool is dangerous and do nothing to correct either of these two facts you are not liable for trespassers. There is an exception for children. Pools are seen as an attractive nuisance, in that for a small child despite the warnings they may trespass without even realizing. A sign might work for a teenager and older, but for a child under the age of three it may not have the same effect. A pool in which a small child drowns can be held liable if there was no fencing or other preventative measures in place to prevent them from getting inside.
Let’s say that there is a broken piece in the pool ladder and you cut yourself. And the owner knew but did nothing. Or the diving board was missing a screw and your ankle is sprained as a result. The pool owner can be found negligent in regards to your injury and can be held liable for your medical bills, lost income and any other damages applicable. You could file a personal injury lawsuit or pursue a claim under their homeowner’s insurance policy.
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