Drowning Accident Lawyer Philadelphia Pennsylvania
According to the statistics of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about ten people drown every day; two of them are children ages 14 or younger. Drowning is the sixth leading cause of unintentional injury death for people of all ages, and the second leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 14. 19% of child drowning fatalities take place in public pools with certified lifeguards on duty.
Drowning accidents can occur anywhere: in private bath tubs, Jacuzzi, hot tubs, private pools, portable pools, hotels, motels, parks, water parks, gym pools, health club whirlpools, ponds, lakes, quarries, rivers and the ocean. Usually, the owners or lessors of the premises are responsible for maintaining the property safe and secure for their invitees, licensees and, sometimes - even trespassers.
The status of the person who was injured on the land of another is important, because it defines the legal rights of the injured person. Similarly, the family of a drowning accident victim will need to know the status of the decedent on the land of another at the time the drowning accident occurred in order to define their legal rights to receive compensation for losses.
Invitees are people who are invited to land by the possessor of the land as a member of the public or those who are invited to the land for the purpose of business dealings with the possessor of the land. The property owner has a duty to make the property safe for the invitee, which includes conducting a reasonable inspection of the premises to uncover hidden dangers. The property owner also has a duty to warn the invitee of hazardous conditions that cannot be fixed. In addition, those in possession of the property assume a duty to rescue an invitee who falls into peril while visiting the property. Life guards have a duty to rescue a drowning person. Beach goers, hotel guests, gym members, and users of recreational swimming facilities are considered invitees on the premises.
Licensees are people who are on the property of another because the owner of the property has allowed them to enter but the property is not open to the public. When a licensee is on the property, the person in possession of the property has a duty to exercise the care that a prudent person would show. The possessor of the property has a duty to warn the licensee if there is a hidden harmful condition on the land and the possessor knows about it. A social guest is an example of licensees.
Trespassers are people who come to the property without the permission of the owner. The trespasser needs to be protected from known manmade conditions capable of causing death or serious injury.
A high percentage of drowning accident victims are children. People who have any body of water on their property should exercise extreme caution to make sure children do not get access to the water when they are not supervised. Unfortunately, many kids drown when the see an attractive pool and they want to swim in it. Many children get injured and drown in artificial lakes, ponds and quarries, especially when such areas are easy to access, have no fence around them and are not supervised.
Attractive Nuisance Doctrine
Pennsylvania law recognizes the doctrine of 'attractive nuisance' which holds landowners and those who occupy land under leases responsible for injuries to children caused by dangerous "artificial" conditions of land that attract children. Under the attractive nuisance doctrine, if the owner knows or has reason to know that children are likely to trespass and when the artificial condition has the potential to cause death or serious bodily injury, the landowner can be held responsible for injuries suffered by children.
Often, the dangers of attractive nuisance can be eliminated without a significant burden. Statistics show that simply putting a fence around a pool or an artificial lake eliminate as many as 50% of drowning accidents involving children.
How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help?
Drowning accidents are categorized under an area of law referred to as premises liability. Premises liability laws govern the responsibility of landowners to maintain safe property conditions and to forewarn visitors of existing hazardous conditions. When a drowning accident occurs, the result can be death or serious injuries. In either case, if drowning was the result of the landowner's negligence, the injured person or his/her family may recover compensation for their losses. Drowning accidents cases require an experienced litigation attorney who will conduct a proper investigation of the drowning accident scene, interview any witnesses, and identify all the responsible parties. The Lassen Law Firm, Pennsylvania drowning accident lawyers, has been successfully representing drowning accident victims and their families for over a decade.
After a person has drowned, the family is legally entitled to seek compensation from the landowner or person or company in charge of supervising the deceased. Claims can be brought not only for negligence of the person supervising the deceased, but also for failing to supervise the deceased. For example, a hotel or motel that held the swimming pool open to its guests but did not have a lifeguard on duty can be held liable if a guest drowns in the pool. A drowning accident victim's family may seek money damages for their losses. The Lassen Law Firm, Pennsylvania personal injury attorneys, will pursue your drowning claim with the utmost professionalism and dedication. If you have lost a loved one in a drowning accident, please read our section on Survival Actions and Wrongful Death Actions to learn more about your right to recover money damages.
Personal Injury Lawyer Pennsylvania
When a person has lost a loved one in a drowning accident, he or she may feel helpless. It is hard enough for people to deal with the loss of a family member, let alone the fact that the drowning death may have been easily prevented.
When a person dies as a result of a drowning accident in Pennsylvania, his/her family may seek monetary damages from the person who is responsible for the victim's death. These damages may cover things such as:
- medical expenses
- funeral expenses
- lost wages
- lost future wages
- emotional distress
- mental impairment
- physical impairment
- pain and suffering
- loss of companionship
The Lassen Law Firm is comprised of leading Philadelphia personal injury lawyers who have extensive legal training and experience in personal injury law. If you have questions about a drowning death in Pennsylvania, call the Lassen Law Firm, Philadelphia personal injury attorneys, today for your free consultation.
The Lassen Law Firm only deducts a 29% contingency fee, not the standard 45% like other firms. We serve ALL of Pennsylvania. We can sign you up over the phone and start working on your case today.
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Authored by: Christian Lassen