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Liability for Texas swimming pool accidents

As Memorial Day approaches Texans are going to be flocking to swimming pools. Swimming pools are a great place for families to relax on a hot day. But they can be dangerous, and fatal swimming pool accidents can happen in an instant. Anyone taking small children to a pool should keep safety in mind at all times.

Every year about 350 children under age five drown in swimming pools. Drowning is second only to car crashes as a cause of death for kids under five.

When a child drowns, the pool owner may be liable. Pools should have walls or fences at least four feet high completely surrounding the pool. Gates in the fence should swing closed and latch automatically. The latch should not be within reach of a small child. Access to the pool through the owner's house should be strictly monitored. If the pool was inadequately fenced and children had access to it, a pool owner may be liable even if the child did not have permission to be on the property.

Failure to supervise children in the pool can also lead to liability. When small children are in a pool a responsible adult should be present and watching them at all times. As soon as a child is noticed to be missing, the pool should be checked immediately. It can take less than five minutes for a child to drown.

When a child drowns due to the negligence of a pool owner, the parents have a legal right to compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit. In many cases a homeowner's insurance policy will provide coverage for the damages.

Source: Consumeraffairs.com, "Swimming Pools - Safety Is No Accident," accessed May 11, 2015

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