Every day, about ten persons in the United States die from an unintentional drowning accident, touching the lives of many newly bereaved loved ones.
If a loved one drowns due to the negligence of another party, depending on the location of the accident, there are laws that can help you to hold the third-party accountable for the incident.
In this article, we will be explaining who is held liable if an accident occurs, to give you a better understanding of the issue.
Read on as we throw more light on this.
How Does Drowning Accident Occur?
Drowning is caused by a liquid covering a person’s mouth and nose, effectively cutting off their oxygen supply.
Because few people can wave their hands or call for aid, drowning frequently happens in silence.
Although drowning happens rapidly, related injuries when left unattended can also lead to death.
Anxiety, wheezing, vomiting, and loss of consciousness are some of the symptoms that might occur following a drowning rescue.
Individuals may die hours after the first occurrence from drowning-related consequences, including hypothermia, acute respiratory distress syndrome, hypoxia, brain, and spinal cord injury, and aspiration of vomit.
Common Places of Drowning Deaths Include
Sinks (infant drowning)
Who Is Most at Risk for Drowning Accident?
People with easy access to water sources, such as pools or natural waters like ponds and rivers, are more likely to drown.
Low- and middle-income nations account for over 90% of global drowning mortality.
However, locations in the United States with many water parks, swimming pools, and beaches, like Florida, have been classified as high-risk areas for drowning injuries and deaths.
According to the CDC, Risk Factors for Drowning include:
Lack of swimming ability
Access to swimming pools
Lack of supervision
Lack of barriers (e.g., fencing around home pools)
Failing to wear a life jacket
Having a seizure disorder
Swimming while under the influence of alcohol
Environmental factors, such as pool accessibility and location, might be just as important as personal issues in determining drowning risk, such as the inability to swim.
Being able to swim, or being rescued from drowning is not be enough to prevent a person from drowning-related death.
After a near-fatal drowning, ignoring treatment can lead to life-threatening complications such as cardiac and respiratory arrest.
Child Drowning Victims
Drowning is the second largest cause of preventable mortality among children and adolescents under 15, with children aged one to four being the most vulnerable.
Most child drownings occur on private property, in swimming pools, bathtubs, hot tubs, or sinks.
Children with underlying medical disorders such as epilepsy may be at a higher risk of drowning complications that are serious and potentially lethal.
Tips for preventing fatal drowning injuries include:
- Teaching children basic swimming skills
- Supervising children who are in or around water
- Using the buddy system
- Learning cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)
- Wearing a life jacket when swimming in an open water source
Who Is Liable for Drowning Deaths Which are Preventable?
The parties who are legally responsible for a drowning incident are determined by the location of the drowning and where you live in the United States.
In addition, specific laws may exist in some states that govern liability for deaths on residential, commercial, or government property.
Drowning In Private Property
If your loved one drowned on private property, the property owner could be liable for wrongful death and other damages.
However, whether the drowning victim was trespassing and there were barriers (e.g., fencing) in place may affect a property owner’s responsibility for deadly drowning.
Residential pools in Florida, for example, must meet specific barrier and enclosure requirements.
Failure to comply with state standards may result in legal consequences.
Drowning In Public Pools
Community pools, fitness center pools, pools on school grounds and waterpark pools are all examples of public collections.
As a result, the owners or operators of these establishments are frequently held accountable for drowning deaths on their premises.
Boating/Watercraft Accident Drowning
Every year, approximately 332 people drown in boating-related accidents.
Boating and other watercraft accidents are more likely to result in drownings in popular coastal states like Florida and California.
In these cases, the responsible parties may differ depending on the cause of the accident.
For example, if a person drowns to death after falling overboard, the owner or operator of the watercraft may be held liable.
Watercraft owners and operators may be held liable if the operator was under the influence of alcohol at the time of the accident or failed to have life jackets on board.
SEE ALSO: How to Become a Personal Injury Lawyer
Now you know the parties are liable for each drowning death.
Also, boating and other watercraft accidents are more likely to result in drownings in popular coastal states like Florida and California.
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