MIAMI, FL— June 17 2011 – As temperatures continue to rise here in South Florida, adults and children alike will be making their way to swimming pools and beaches as a means of escaping the looming summer heat. While the simple acts of jumping into the ocean or a swimming in a pool have long been a considered some of Florida’s most enjoyable pastimes, the Miami injury attorneys of Gerson & Schwartz urge residents to take extra safety precautions to ensure safe swimming, especially when young children are involved.
According to data provided by the state Department of Health (DOH), during the year 2009, 69 percent of drowning deaths and non-fatal drowning hospitalizations occurred between the months of April and September (spring through summer).
DOH statistics also indicated children between the ages of 1 and 4 are more likely to die as a result of drowning than any other cause of death. For children in that age group, Florida has the highest drowning death rate in the country. Those kids made up 13 percent of the total number of drowning deaths—485—as well as 43 percent of the non-fatal drowning hospitalizations—388— in the state during the year 2009.
By combining all drowning fatalities and non-fatal drowning hospitalizations recorded that year, the Department of Health found that 67 percent of the victims were males.
Furthermore, statistical data suggested that while Florida children under the age of 10 have a higher risk of drowning in a swimming pool, residents above the age of 10 were more prone to drown in a natural, open body of water such as the ocean or a lake.
During the year 2009, 48 Florida residents under the age of 5 (68 percent of drowning victims in that age group) drowned in swimming pools. Six kids (8 percent of the total) drowned in bathtubs, and nine (13 percent) drowned natural bodies of water.
Seven kids between the ages of five and nine (58 percent of the victims within that age group) reportedly drowned in open water, while five others (42 percent) drowned in swimming pools.
A total of 210 Florida drowning victims who were at least 10 years of age (52 percent of the total tally of victims within that particular age group) drowned in open water. Ninety-two others (23 percent of the total) drowned in swimming pools.
The Miami injury law firm of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A. provided the following tips to help Floridians prevent drowning injuries and deaths in the impending summer months:
- Take the initiative to teach children to swim
- Make sure kids understand basic pool safety guidelines before they enter the water
- Never leave a child unattendedIf a child does wander off, make sure to check the pool area first
- Install child proof pool fences around home swimming pools
- Make sure to have a phone nearby, in case of emergency
- Cover and lock hot tubs when they are not being used
About the Miami injury lawyers of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A.
With four decades of experience litigating the multifaceted personal injury and wrongful death claims of negligence victims and their families, the knowledgeable Florida personal injury lawyers of Gerson & Schwartz are dedicated to protecting the rights of these individuals and fighting to ensure that their case is taken seriously. Skilled in a wide range of practice areas within the broad spectrum of personal injury litigation, the Miami injury attorneys of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A. strive to provide justice to these injury victims and ultimately help them obtain the compensation they deserve.