Pool owners may not comprehend the temptation a swimming pool is to a child. As adults, it is difficult for us to remember how attractive pools look to a young person. Many pool owners forget that feeling and fail to account for the possibility that a child will get to their pool and suffer harm. Just such a tragedy occurred earlier this month when a 7-year-old girl and her 5-year-old brother made their way into a neighbor’s aboveground pool and drowned.
The pool in question was said to contain roughly 4 feet of blackish water. The children were found by police who were searching for the children after their mother dialed 911 to report that they were missing. One of the officers searching saw a child’s shoe floating in the uncovered pool. When officers jumped in the pool, they found both siblings unconscious. Efforts to revive the children were unsuccessful.
A detective with the homicide squad indicated that the property owner has previously received a citation from the community for not having proper fencing. The low, wooden stockade fence around the pool had the exposed side out, making it easier for someone to climb the fence.
Pool safety is a serious matter. Proper fencing and devices such as gate alarms decrease the likelihood that a child will be able to gain access to the pool with the help of an adult. State and local regulations are in place to let property owners know the minimum safety requirements for maintaining a swimming pool.
Source: NBC News, “Brother, sister drown in neighbor’s uncovered pool,” 14 April 2013