Spa and Pool Drains Can Cause Injuries, Death
Six-year-old Abigail Taylor died last week from injuries she sustained in June 2007 when she sat on a wading pool drain at the Minneapolis Golf Club. The powerful suction caused a tear in her rectum and she was disemboweled. They later found Abigail's intestine in the pool's filter. Abigail's family and attorney maintain she was seriously wounded because the cover of the drain had been removed.
The suction from a pool drain can be so powerful that it can hold an adult under water
The suction from a pool drain can be so powerful that it can hold an adult under water, but most entrapment incidents involve children. From 1985 to 2004, records show that at least 33 children ages 14 and under died as a result of pool and spa entrapment, and nearly 100 children were seriously injured. But according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Safe Kids Worldwide, the number of entrapment deaths could be much higher than reported. Because entrapment is generally a little-known risk for drowning, it is possible that many drowning deaths have not been classified as entrapment.
Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act
On December 19, 2007, the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act was signed into law. This act is named after the daughter of Nancy Baker and the granddaughter of former Secretary of State James Baker who died in a tragic incident in June 2002 after the suction from a spa drain trapped her under the water.
The new law focuses on making pools and spas safer, securing the area around the pool or spa, and educating consumers and industry on pool safety in order to reduce the 260 yearly pool and spa drownings involving children and suction entrapment deaths and injuries. By December 19, 2008, swimming pool and spa drain covers available for purchase in the U.S. are required to meet specific requirements. Public swimming pools, wading pools, spas and hot tubs must meet certain requirements for installation of compliant drain covers and in certain circumstances, mandatory installation of additional devices or systems designed to prevent suction entrapment.
Injured in a Swimming Pool or Spa?
Contact the attorneys at Bachus & Schanker immediately. We'll fight for justice if you or a loved one has been injured or if you have lost a loved one as a result of a pool or spa incident.
All of our attorneys work on a contigency basis, which means you will pay no up-front, out-of-pocket money.