Did you know that drownings are an ever-present danger in resort areas like Myrtle Beach and Charleston, S.C.? In Myrtle Beach alone, there were at least 13 drownings or missing swimmer incidents last summer.

Drownings and swimming accidents don’t just happen on the beach – they also happen in the many hotel swimming pools, lakes, and rivers that can be found throughout our coastal areas.

Unfortunately, families often do not think about this horrific possibility until it happens. Drowning deaths, or the severe injuries that can result from oxygen deprivation in a near-drowning, can bring a terrible end to what was a happy summer vacation.

Who is Responsible for a Drowning Death or Swimming Pool Injury?

Every case is different, and the responsible party will depend on where the accident happened, who was responsible for supervision, whether a swimming pool was properly maintained, and whether adequate safety equipment was provided. Although it may be difficult to say without investigating the circumstances of the accident, many accidents are no one’s fault. Unfortunately, there are many tragedies in life for which there is no recourse or remedy.

On the other hand, when a property owner, lifeguard, or equipment manufacturer’s negligence causes a death or injury, they are responsible to the injured person or the deceased person’s family for the damage caused by their carelessness.

Swimming Deaths on the Beach

Cities like Myrtle Beach are responsible for the conduct of their employees and police officers, but that does not automatically mean that a city is liable when a drowning death occurs. Cities are often shielded from liability by various statutes and whether a municipality can be held liable will depend on the facts of each case. There may be independent companies that are responsible such as a company that provides lifeguard services or a company that provided recreational watercraft to the deceased or injured person.

The victim’s own conduct is also important in determining who is liable, which is why it is critical to quickly locate and interview any potential witnesses to the accident and to obtain any video or photos that show what happened.

Hotel Swimming Deaths

Hotels are more likely than municipalities to be held liable for deaths or injuries that occur in their swimming pools.  A hotel or other property owner may be responsible for a drowning death when there is damaged or missing safety equipment, the pool is not properly maintained, the staff is poorly trained, or there are other unsafe conditions that should have been corrected by the hotel’s management. When we talk to a new client, we look at every possible angle that our client could use to recover from a negligent property owner.

Drowning accidents are among the most tragic experiences that a family can experience. Your personal injury attorney at Coastal Law, LLC, will do everything ethically possible to hold the negligent parties responsible, compensate you or your family, and ensure that this type of tragedy does not happen again. You can schedule a free consultation to discuss the facts of your case by calling (843) 488-5000 or filling out our online form.

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