Backyard swimming pools are a popular amenity in Southern California. They offer a great way to get some exercise, relax and cool off from our blazing arid climate.
They also pose safety hazards, however. Swimming pool accidents are usually preventable. When tragic accidents happen, they can be grounds for a premises liability claim against the homeowner, which usually involves seeking compensation through their homeowners’ insurance.
Safety tips for backyard pools
Here’s what to know about how to keep backyard swimming pools safe:
- Install the proper safety measures. By law, private swimming pools must have adequate safety measures. As of 2018, new and remodeled pools must have at least two of seven specified measures, which include:
- A five-foot fence
- A mesh fence with a self-closing, lockable gate
- An exit alarm
- An alarm in the pool itself
- A pool cover
- A self-latching, self-closing door between the house and pool
- Another approved safety measure
- Don’t prop the gate or door open. While a self-latching gate may seem like an inconvenience, it’s a small annoyance compared to the risk of someone drowning. Never prop a gate or door open. It’s all too easy to forget about it.
- Never leave children unattended. Sadly, most of the drownings that occur in backyard swimming pools involve children. Always keep a close eye on children around swimming pools. Even when there are multiple adults, drownings happen because everyone assumes someone else is watching the kids. Always designate at least one person as the pool “guardian.”
Nobody wants an accident to happen in their pool. Vigilance and full compliance with safety requirements can go a long way toward preventing accidents.