A day at the public pool or water park is supposed to be about fun in the sun. However, if conditions affect pool and water park safety, it can end in a water park accident.
Water Park Accidents: Who’s Liable?
Anyone who owns and/or operates a public facility has a duty to their guests and employees to maintain safe conditions.
- Making sure that all pools and equipment are properly installed and maintained, and that any repairs are conducted in a timely manner.
- Establishing rules to promote safety, posting them in prominent areas throughout the premises so that all guest can read and understand them, and making sure they’re enforced.
- Fully documenting any incidents
- Correcting any deficiencies or issues within a reasonable time period
- Making sure that certified lifeguards are on-premises, that there is a sufficient number of lifeguards for the facility’s capacity, and that staff are trained and certified to perform first aid. In Massachusetts, lifeguards must be at least 16 years old, and there should be one lifeguard for every 25 guests.
However, guests and staff members also have a responsibility to act in a safe manner by following rules and guidelines that were created to ensure safety and avoid a pool or water park accident. For example, not standing on slides, rough-housing, or running on wet surfaces.
If you file a personal injury claim, an accident lawyer and the courts will evaluate the facts in the case to determine who’s liable for the incident, and to what extent. Whether the accident meets the legal definition of civil or criminal liability, it’s important to launch an investigation into the causes to prevent future accidents.
Pool and water park safety is a tort that falls under the auspices of premises liability law. Legal liability in personal injury and wrongful death cases is decided by determining that:
– The premises owner and/or agents of the owner had a duty to take reasonable care
– That that duty was breached, either willfully or by accident
– That the breach of that duty was responsible for the death or injury
Once liability has been established, a long list of factors goes into determining monetary compensation. Your Massachusetts water park accident lawyer can provide you with information that’s specific to your claim.
Common Water Feature Accidents
Swimming pools and water parks are wet, slippery, and usually crowded. These conditions alone set the scene for falls and bumps. If you add negligence in the form of unmaintained equipment or inadequate safety controls like life guards and flotation devices, a minor incident could become serious fast.
Some common water-related accidents are:
- Water slide injuries that result from mats or tubes flipping, slipping, or losing traction
- Drownings or near-drownings. These can result from weak swimming skills and lack of supervision, from hair, clothing or jewelry getting caught in drains or on equipment, and reckless or negligent behavior on the part of park employees. IN the state of Massachusetts, pool drain covers must comply with the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Safety Spa Act of 2008.
- Slip and fall injuries due to wet surfaces. These can result in broken bones, serious head trauma, or even death.
- Head or spinal cord injuries from diving accidents. This is often due to diving in a pool that’s too shallow or hitting the edge of a pool or diving board.
Injuries or fatalities due to defective equipment
How to Keep Your Family Safe
Pool and water park safety rules are meant to keep visitors and staff members from getting hurt. You can do your part to prevent them by knowing and following the rules set by the establishment, preventing children and others from using rides or swimming in areas that are beyond their age or capabilities to use safely, and by reporting any problems like broken equipment or inappropriate behavior to park or pool officials right away.
What to Do When Someone is Injured
We hope that your family’s next visit to a water park or pool is everything you expected. But when the unexpected happens and results in a death or injury, a water park accident lawyer in Massachusetts will work hard to make sure you get the justice you deserve. Contact a personal injury attorney at Raipher P.C. to request an evaluation of your case today.