Swimming Pool Accidents to Be Mindful of this Summer

By Jose Ceja
Managing Attorney

Swimming pool accidents in Texas are primarily handled under what’s known as premises liability law, which deals with accidents and injuries that occur on someone else’s property. The owner of the property (in this case, the swimming pool) has a duty to ensure that the pool is safe for use. Ceja Law Firm, PLLC can make sure that your interests are protected in the unfortunate event of an accident caused by a swimming pool. We will provide you with legal advice specific to your situation. 

Swimming pool accidents can occur in a number of ways. Here are some of the most common types:

  • Drowning and Near-Drowning Incidents: This is the most serious type of swimming pool accident and can lead to deaths or significant injuries, such as brain damage due to lack of oxygen.
  • Slip and Fall Accidents: Wet surfaces around pools are slippery, which can lead to falls. These can result in a range of injuries, from minor cuts and bruises to more serious issues like fractures, concussions, or spinal cord injuries.
  • Diving Board Accidents: Accidents can occur when someone jumps off a diving board incorrectly or when the board is faulty. These accidents can cause serious injuries such as spinal cord damage, traumatic brain injury, or broken bones.
  • Pool Drain Accidents: There have been cases where individuals, especially children, get parts of their bodies or hair caught in the pool’s drain, leading to injuries or even drowning.
  • Chemical Exposure: Pools require certain chemicals to keep them clean, but improper storage or usage can lead to chemical burns, poisoning, or respiratory issues.
  • Electrical Accidents: Faulty wiring or misuse of electrical devices near the pool can lead to electrocution.
  • Infections: If the pool isn’t properly cleaned and maintained, individuals may be exposed to bacteria leading to ear infections or skin rashes.
  • Injuries from Pool Toys and Equipment: Sometimes, people get injured due to faulty or inappropriate use of pool toys, floatation devices, or even equipment that is placed in the pool for maintenance.

Some of the laws that might apply in case you or someone you know is engaged in a swimming pool accident in Texas would be the following:

  • Premises Liability: In Texas, in order to prove a case where you have been injured due to a swimming pool, you must establish that the owner or occupier had actual or constructive knowledge of a defective condition on the premises, failed to correct it, and that the condition posed an unreasonable risk of harm. You, as the injured party, must also show that you lacked knowledge of the condition, or if you did, you didn’t fully appreciate the danger, and that the owner or occupier should have anticipated this.
  • Attractive Nuisance Doctrine: This doctrine can apply in cases involving children who are injured in a swimming pool. If a pool is not adequately secured and a child is attracted to it and gets injured, the pool owner could be held liable, even if the child was trespassing.
  • Texas residential swimming statutes: Under the law, residential swimming pools must meet certain safety standards, such as having barriers or fences with self-closing and self-latching gates, and alarms. Violation of these safety requirements can result in liability if an accident occurs.
  • Negligence: In all of these types of accidents above, if the accident was caused purely by the fault of the pool owner or occupier, you might be able to recover on your claim. Texas follows a modified form of comparative negligence. This means that if an injured person is found to be partially at fault for their injuries, their recovery may be reduced by their percentage of fault. If they’re found to be more than 50% at fault, they will not be able to recover any damages.
  • Statute of Limitations: The statute of limitations for personal injury claims in Texas is generally two years from the date of the accident.

It is important to consult with a lawyer who is experienced with Texas law to discuss the specifics of a case. These laws can be complicated and their application can vary based on the unique facts of each situation. Our law firm can help you navigate the particulars of the law governing swimming pool accidents, investigate the accident and identify the responsible parties and help you try to recover what you are entitled to in the event of an accident. Reach out to our team today.

About the Author
Jose Ceja is the managing attorney of Ceja Law Firm. He has practiced law since 2007 and has devoted his career to the practice of criminal law. Mr. Ceja began his legal career as a felony drug prosecutor, where he prosecuted drug, gang, and violent offenses. Mr. Ceja has first or second chaired almost 100 trials, including murders, drug cases, DWIs, and assaults. In his career as a defense attorney, he has regularly obtained dismissals, not guilty verdicts, and grand jury “no bills” in a wide variety of cases.