Schemery Zicolello

Portable pools present dangers to Pennsylvania children

In the hot summer weather, Pennsylvania residents may be looking to cool off in a local pool. While many people understand the dangers of large pools -- especially to young children -- the dangers of smaller portable pools may not be as obvious.

Smaller pools, including baby pools, are a popular and affordable option for many Pennsylvania families. However, they pose dangers to those around them. In fact, these portable pools are responsible for 11 percent of pool drownings for children age five and under. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission says that an average of 35 children die each year from these pools.

Victims of pool drownings and their families may not know that it is the property owner's responsibly to keep people safe around their pools. Under premises liability laws, property owners have the duty to keep people on their property safe. This can include taking proper precautions to ensure that people injured by a pool on their property.

Experts say there are several things homeowners can do to make their portable pools safer. These safety measures include

  • Emptying and storing away the pool when not in use
  • Fencing in portable pools
  • Supervising children in small pools
  • Removing ladders from pools when not in use
  • Using pool covers

These simple safety measures can decrease the risk of injury to those around a pool -- especially the risk to small children. However, if an accident still occurs, accident victims and their families should make sure they understand their legal rights. People who are injured by unprotected pools may be entitled to compensation under premises liability laws.

Source: The Pike County Courier, "Portable pools just as dangerous as any other pool," July 2, 2014

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