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Three ways for homeowners to improve pool safety

New York residents with a swimming pool know that keeping it secure is a big responsibility. The CDC estimates that there are 7.4 million pools and 5 million hot tubs on residential and public properties in the U.S. It also claims that over 3,500 Americans die in non-boating drowning accidents every year.

There are three areas of safety that homeowners will want to concentrate on. The first is the perimeter. Installing a climb-resistant pool fence, at least four feet high and with a self-closing gate, can keep small children away. That includes one's own and the neighbor's: homeowners may be held responsible for injuries sustained by children who trespass without sufficient knowledge that what they're doing is wrong. A pool alarm is also good to have.

The second step is to make sure everyone, including all guests, knows the pool safety rules. The pool edge should be free of trip hazards, including flotation toys. There should be no running or using riding toys around the pool. Children should not dive where it's too deep. Electrical appliances should be kept away.

Lastly, homeowners must address any mechanical and chemical hazards. Chemicals should be properly stored and labeled. The pool's suction fittings and plumbing grates must be secure. The shutoff for the pump must be accessible in case of emergencies.

When the entrants of a property are injured through no fault of their own, they might have valid grounds for a premises liability claim. A lawyer may opt to have third-party experts gather proof against the property owner, such as the incident report and any surveillance camera footage. If the victim was a child trespasser, the lawyer may apply the doctrine of an "attractive nuisance" to the pool. The lawyer may be able to handle all negotiations with the other side, litigating if a settlement cannot be reached.

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Orin J. Cohen Law
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