Brandon Personal Injury Attorney
It's Like Having a Lawyer in the Family
Follow Us Facebook Twitter Linked In

Call For a FREE Consultation Handset 813-438-5960 Serving Brandon, Tampa and all of Florida

Top Two Swimming Pool Drowning Causes In Florida


Unintentional drowning, and not motor vehicle crashes or some other category, is the leading cause of injury-related death in children under 4. These victims are small and fragile. So, just a few minutes under the water is sufficient to cause irreversible brain damage or death.

Due to the serious and stunning nature of these injuries, substantial compensation is usually available. This compensation normally includes money for economic damages, such as medical bills, and noneconomic damages, such as pain and suffering.

Perhaps more importantly, a legal claim often brings about justice. The tortfeasor (negligent actor) is clearly identified, as is the cause of the drowning. Hopefully, these things will prevent future similar drownings.

Access to Private Swimming Pools

Even in large groups, youngsters sometimes drift too close to the water. When several people are in the vicinity, each thinks that someone else is watching the child. In these situations, swimming pool owners have a clear duty to keep their pools safe.

This duty also applies if the child is a trespasser. The attractive nuisance rule applies to places like swimming pools, where children are likely to play and likely to suffer serious injury. Furthermore, the cost of protecting the pool is rather negligible, as outlined below.

When it comes to swimming pool access, the law usually sets the standard of care. All pool owners in Florida are bound by the Preston de Ibern/McKenzie Merriam Residential Pool Safety Act. Among other things, this law requires:

  • Barriers which are at least four feet high, completely isolate swimming pools from other areas of the property, and cannot be climbed,
  • Manual or automatic swimming pool covers which meet or exceed American Society for Testing and Materials standards, and
  • Self-closing and self-locking latches which operate from the pool side of the gate.

Brandon and other Florida municipalities often have their own swimming pool safety laws. If that’s the case, these local laws usually control.

If the pool safety devices did not pass muster under the safety law, and that failure substantially caused the victim/plaintiff’s injury, the swimming pool owner might be liable for damages as a matter of law. Typically, the victim/plaintiff must also prove that the owner knew, or should have known, about the defective condition.

Improper Swimming Pool Maintenance

At public and semi-public pools, like apartment or hotel pools, a slightly different set of rules applies. These facilities must have certain lifesaving equipment within easy reach of the pool area. Poorly-maintained drains may be a problem as well. These objects create undercurrents which are especially dangerous for children and inexperienced swimmers.

Many public pools have signs like “Swim At Your Own Risk” or “No Lifeguard On Duty.” Some people believe that if these warning signs are in place, victims cannot file damage claims. But that’s not true. Such signage simply lays the foundation for the assumption of the risk defense. This doctrine has two elements:

  • The voluntary assumption
  • Of a known risk.

The defendant has the burden of proof on each prong. For example, the defendant must prove the victim voluntarily assumed the risk. The sign must be clearly visible, the victim must have been able to read it, and the victim must have been able to fully understand it.

On a related note, swimming pool poisoning may be a bigger problem than swimming pool drownings. Chlorine and other harsh cleaning chemicals often cause chemical burns if the quantity is just a little too high. Some owners go the other way. They neglect pool cleaning, and that allows deadly bacteria to grow and thrive.

Work With Tenacious Attorneys

Drowning victims may be entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Brandon, contact Reed & Reed. We have four area offices (St. Petersburg, Lakeland, Tampa, and Clearwater).


Brandon Personal Injury
Reed & Reed, Attorneys at Law, is located in Brandon, FL and serves clients in
and around Brandon, Tampa, Apollo Beach, Sydney, Gibsonton, Balm, Valrico, Wimauma, Sun City Center, Lithia, Ruskin, Durant, and Hillsborough County.

Our Locations


101 East Lumsden Road
Brandon, FL 33511
Tel: 813-438-5960
Fax: 813-438-5995

St. Petersburg

1700 66th Street North, Ste. 104-1008
St. Petersburg, FL 33710
Tel: 727-362-7520
Fax: 727-362-7521


248 N Kentucky Avenue #72
Lakeland, FL 33801
Tel: 863-274-7715
Fax: 863-274-7716


401 E Jackson Street, Ste. 2340
Tampa, FL 33602
Tel: 813-440-6678
Fax: 813-440-6682


13575 58th Street N, Ste. 200
Clearwater, FL 33760
Tel: 727-767-9914
Fax: 727-767-9915


The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.

No content on this site may be reused in any fashion without written permission from

MileMark Media - Practice Growth Solutions

© 2014 - 2020 Reed & Reed, Attorneys at Law. All rights reserved.
This law firm website is managed by MileMark Media.

Contact Form Tab