The June 22 death of 5-Year-Old Connor Freed is causing residents and lawmakers to reevaluate whether there should be more monitoring and regulating of Maryland’s swimming pools.
Freed drowned this past summer at the Crofton Country Club. His parents later filed a $20 million wrongful death suit against the club and its pool management company. The suit claims that the club and company did not do enough to make sure there were enough experienced lifeguards on site.
Freed’s family has established the Connor Cares Foundation and hopes to persuade lawmakers to create new laws that will ensure stricter safety and security around pools in Maryland.
According to USA Safekids.org:
· Drowning is the second cause of injury-related deaths for kids ages 14 and under.
· In 2004, 3702 children (ages 14 and under) were treated in emergency rooms after nearly drowning.
· 40% of these near-drowning incidents took place in swimming pools.
According to Poseidon.com:
· In 2000, there were 3,482 unintentional drownings in the United States; that’s an average of nine people per day (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).
· It is estimated that for each drowning death, there are 1 to 4 nonfatal submersions serious enough to result in hospitalization. Children who still require cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) at the time they arrive at the emergency department have a poor prognosis, with at least half of survivors suffering significant neurological impairment (American Academy of Pediatrics).
· Drowning is the second-leading cause of injury-related death among children under the age of 15
(U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).
· 19% of drowning deaths involving children occur in public pools with certified lifeguards present.
(Drowning Prevention Foundation).
· A swimming pool is 14 times more likely than a motor vehicle to be involved in the death of children 4 years of age and under (Orange County California Fire Authority).
· Children under five years of age and adolescents between the ages of 15-24 have the highest drowning rates (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).
· An estimated 5,000 children ages 14 and under are hospitalized due to unintentional drowning-related incidents each year; 15 percent die in the hospital, and as many as 20 percent suffer severe, permanent neurological disability (National Safety Council).
· Of all preschoolers who drown, 70 percent are in the care of one or both parents at the time of the drowning and 75 percent are missing from sight for five minutes or less (Orange County, CA, Fire Authority).
· The majority of children who survive (92 percent) are discovered within two minutes following submersion, and most children who die (86 percent) are found after 10 minutes. Nearly all who require cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) die or are left with severe brain injury (National Safe Kids Campaign).
If your child has been seriously injured or killed in a drowning accident, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit. The law firm of Lebowitz and Mzhen handles wrongful death suits and lawsuits involving injuries to minors. Contact Lebowitz and Mzhen for a free consultation.
Related Web Resources:
Family Sues Country Club Over 5-Year-Old’s Drowning, HometownAnnapolis.com, July 21, 2006
Parents Sue Over Child’s Drowning At Country Club, Baltimoresun.com, July 21, 2006
Swimming Pools, Safety Is No Accident, Consumeraffairs.com