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Virginia Graeme Baker’s Death would not be in VainAfter the death of Virginia Graeme Baker, the child’s mother, Nancy Baker, worked relentlessly in efforts to improve pool and spa safety. With the tragic story of her daughter’s death, Nancy Baker became one of the strongest advocates for pool and spa safety. Her efforts resulted in a new, life-saving law, signed in 2007 and implemented in 2008 – the Virginia Graeme Baker Act.
Understanding the LawSec. 1404 (b) states the following:
“Effective 1 year after December 19, 2007, each swimming pool or spa drain cover manufactured, distributed, or entered into commerce in the United States shall conform to the entrapment protection standards of the ASME/ANSI A112.19.8 performance standard, or any successor standard regulating such swimming pool or drain cover. If a successor standard is proposed, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers shall notify the Commission of the proposed revision. If the Commission determines that the proposed revision is in the public interest, it shall incorporate the revision into the standard after providing 30 days notice to the public.”The law states that all public pools and spas in the U.S. must be equipped with anti-entrapment devices or other systems that meet safety standards. The law also states that public pools and spas in the country with single main drains (other than ublockable drains) must be equipped with one or more of the following:
- Safety vacuum release system
- Suction-limiting vent system
- Gravity drainage system
- Automatic pump shut-off system
- Drain disablement
- Other systems
– Pool accident claims – Hotel Liability Swimming Pool Accidental Drowning – Swimming Pool Drowning Lawyer – Hotel Liability for Accidents and Injuries
Parties and Entities will Always Violate the LawSome people claim that laws are meant to be broken; however, some laws are simply meant to keep others safe. Unfortunately, many people disregard important laws, such as the law discussed above that mandates drain covers and the implementation of safety systems to prevent entrapment. In general, a violation of such an important law will not be apparent until something terrible happens – and an innocent swimmer is entrapped in a drain. If the appropriate safety systems are in place, there is no reason why entrapment should occur (besides faulty installation or defective products, for example); however, the pool or spa owner might not carry liability. Instead, the installation company or the manufacturer of the product could be found liable. In instances in which the pool or spa owner refused to install the appropriate drain cover or any of the safety systems described by the law, they might be completely liable for the incident and harm suffered.
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