Pools Are Silent Killers

Pools have been called many things, but some families know them as silent killers.

Unfortunately, the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S. is death by drowning. The statistics show that at least 4,000 people die a watery death every year; those figures thanks to the American Institute for Preventive Medicine. The shocking part is that just about one-third of the death toll is children under the age of 14 years old. That’s something to think about. What will you do about it?

You might want to give some consideration to a pool alarm. While it’s simple, it has been known to save lives. It’s pretty straightforward. You put the device in the water and it monitors the water for movement; much like a motion detector light that flicks on when someone moves into its monitoring radius. In the case of the pool alarm, if movement is detected, an alarm will go off warning that something has disturbed the water. As a practicing Austin personal injury attorney, I wish more people would invest in something like this to protect the children.

This would certainly make a significant difference in the response time of the lifesaver from the time a child fell into the pool until they are pulled out. It only takes a matter of seconds for a child to drown – in fact, your child could drown in the length of time it takes you to go get a glass of water. An alarm is instantaneous, prompting a quick response.

You’d want to choose a pool alarm that has some brains and can monitor and analyze the pool’s surface. It would sound the alarm if movement – say an animal or child fell in the pool – was sensed. Most alarms of this type have some kind of motion detection that relies on an integrated circuit to control the alarm. Make sure you choose one that runs on batteries. It’s a major no-no to have an alarm plugged into an electrical outlet and floating in water.

Also check to make sure there is a low battery warning built into the system and perhaps go for one with a 9-volt battery that can be recharged (ni-cads) or at least has a longer life (lithium ion) and one that is loud; loud enough for even the neighbors to hear. In other words, make it simple and easy to use, to change, to watch and to set up. A simple setup should also mean the pool alarm you choose has a bypass key for when the adults go swimming. When you leave the pool and aren’t sure who else is in the area, reset the alarm to guard the pool.

This is actually a very important thing to note. If you have a pool, you have something enticing to neighborhood children. And legally speaking, if you don’t protect it and have it set up in such a way as the children can’t break in and use it, you may have a world of legal problems on your hands if there is a drowning accident. A pool alarm would also help keep your pool clear of trespassers that want a free swim.

There are a lot of choices out there and one of them may be just right for you and your pool. Protecting your family is important, but protecting yourself against lawsuits is also important, emotionally and financially. Don’t let something bad happen in your pool, not when you have other options to keep everyone safe.

Beverly Aylmer writes for Lee, Gober & Reyna. If you need an Austin personal injury lawyer, contact an Austin personal injury attorney from Lee, Gober & Reyna. Visit RWLeelaw.com.