How Can Improper Lifeguard Training Affect Swimmers?Lifeguards are supposed to keep swimmers safe – rescuing swimmers when necessary and administering aid (CPR), for example. It is necessary for lifeguards to know exactly what they are doing at all times. Unfortunately, however, it is possible for lifeguards to lack the necessary training and skills to effectively perform their duties. When lifeguards are untrained and generally unskilled, swimmers are at risk of suffering harm. Depending on the situation, swimmers could suffer near-drowning injuries (although near-drowning in not fatal, complications from near-drowning could eventually lead to death). Without a doubt, poor lifeguard training could lead to preventable drowning incidents – in which innocent people lose their lives directly due to the lifeguards’ improper training.
Who Employs Lifeguards?Most people do not really understand lifeguards. We know that they are supposed to keep swimmers safe. However, we really don’t know anything more. It is important to know that lifeguards can be employed through the police department, the fire department, and private companies. There are also freelance lifeguards who work independently. In some cities, the police department is responsible for beach patrol – so, there will be a special unit assigned for beach patrol duties. Within this beach patrol, some parties could be assigned to life guard duties. In other cities, the fire department is responsible for beach-related safety. This means that lifeguards work through the fire department. These agencies usually only provide lifeguards for beaches and other public swimming areas (such as community pools, for example). Private beaches, private pools (like in-ground backyard pools), and even water parks do not generally have lifeguards through the police or fire departments. Instead, their lifeguards are hired through private companies (water park lifeguards are usually water park employees). These rental lifeguards are available for pool parties, for example, at hourly rates.
Who is Liable for Any Harm Caused by Improperly Trained Lifeguards?As explained above, lifeguards work through different entities. These entities, whether it’s a police department, fire department, or private lifeguard company, for instance, have the duty to ensure that they are hiring people fit for the job. To ensure that their lifeguards are fit to perform their jobs effectively, these entities have to provide their lifeguards with appropriate training. If they fail to properly train their lifeguards and allow their lifeguards to be on-duty regardless, they are being negligent and could be liable for the harm any swimmers suffer – given that they harm is directly related to poor training.
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Could You Sue?Do you have the right to sue if you suffered any harm associated with improper lifeguard training? If a lifeguard was not effectively trained, liability might fall back onto the lifeguard’s employer – for failing to ensure that the lifeguard had the appropriate training to fulfill his or her duties. After being harmed as a result of improper or poor lifeguard training, you must be aware that improper lifeguard training could be reflective of the negligence of the lifeguard’s employer. If the harm that you suffered can be directly associated with the negligence of a party or entity, you will likely have grounds to sue. You could pursue a claim and even fight for the right to recover compensation. If you would like to learn more about your right to file a claim and sue for the harm that you suffered because of improper lifeguard training, do not hesitate to seek the legal expertise of the lawyers at our firm. Our attorneys are ready to provide you with the guidance that you need to pursue your claim.
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Could You Recover Compensation?You were harmed as a result of improper lifeguard training; could you receive compensation? If your claim reaches a successful outcome, you might be eligible to receive at least some sort of compensation for the harm that you suffered. The type and amount of compensation that you are eligible to receive will always depend on the specific details of your claim. Some of the compensation that could be available for recovery includes the following:
- Medical bills
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
- Funeral expenses
- Burial expenses
- Loss of consortium
- Punitive damages
Important Steps to TakeWhat should you do if the harm that you or a member of your family suffered was a direct result of the negligent actions of a lifeguard that reflected his or her improper lifeguard training? Whether a member of your family died or suffered injuries, you should consider doing the following:
- Seek medical attention
- Seek confirmation on the cause of death (if the incident was fatal)
- Report the incident immediately
- Collect the name of the lifeguard involved
- Identify any surveillance cameras that could have captured the incident
- Gather witness information
- Gather all documents associated with the expenses caused by the incident
- Gather insurance information (if available)
- Seek legal assistance immediately