Drowning Accident Attorneys

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North Carolina Drowning Accidents

Unfortunately, drowning accidents in North Carolina are prevalent. North Carolina’s coastal access and wide variety of lake attractions only add to the risk already incurred by everyday situations such as community and home pools. While these areas make for fun summer activities, they can also become dangerous to boaters and swimmers. Unfortunately, Swimming-related accidents are a leading cause of death for children 13 and under. In many drowning cases, negligence is at fault and those responsible should be held accountable. When a drowning accident happens, you may be able to file a product liability, premises liability, wrongful death claim or personal injury lawsuit for damages. In these situations, an expert drowning accident attorney at Edwards Kirby can help you navigate the legal process and get you the justice that you or a loved one deserve.

Raleigh Drowning Accident Lawyers

Seeking Justice After a Drowning or Near Drowning Accident

Edwards Kirby attorneys have a national reputation for representing victims of swimming pool, boating and diving accidents. Our drowning accident attorneys won the largest products liability verdict in the swimming pool industry’s history awarding the family $24.5 million dollars.

John Edwards and David Kirby were awarded the American Association for Justice national public service award in 1997 for their work on behalf of a child who had her intestines pulled out after being trapped by suction on a defective pool drain. The decision led to widespread changes around the country in the standards for swimming pool drains.

Types of Swimming Pool & Water Accidents

Edwards Kirby is recognized among the best possible advocates in a serious personal injury lawsuit or wrongful death claim involving circumstances such as:

  • Unsafe or unsupervised swimming pools and spas in hotels, resorts, apartment complexes, and recreation centers
  • Injuries and deaths caused by inattentive or poorly trained lifeguards
  • Drowning or severe injuries in quarries, gravel pits, and ponds
  • Diving accidents caused by improper training, defective equipment, negligent supervision, or unsafe conditions

While drowning is the injury that most people connect with accidents on or in the water, other serious injuries can occur in boating accidents or diving mishaps. These include brain damage caused by extended periods of insufficient oxygen and serious spinal cord, back, or neck injuries suffered while diving.

If you or someone in your family has been seriously injured or killed in a drowning accident or other water-related accident, we can help. Contact a Raleigh drowning accident lawyer at Edwards Kirby today or call us at (919) 897-7662. contact Edwards Kirby.We offer a free initial consultation to discuss your needs.

Who is At Risk for Drowning or Swimming Pool Accidents

Drowning is a serious risk that can happen to anybody, anytime and anywhere there is access to water. However, if you or your loved ones have easy access to pools, lakes, or coastal shorelines and enjoy aquatic activities, you are at higher risk for drowning than those who don’t.

Of course, not all water environments are created with equal risk either. For example, while drowning in a hot tub is certainly possible, it’s not as likely as drowning in the ocean off of North Carolina’s myriad beaches—where deadly rip currents, high surf, and sneaker waves can cause even the most competent swimmers to lose control of the situation. In 2019, there were 17 rip current fatalities across North Carolina’s coastline.

Overall, water parks, swimming pools, and beaches make swimmers particularly vulnerable to unintentional drowning. Plus, unintentional drowning is also likelier when one or more of the following risk factors—outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention—are present.

  • Lack of swimming ability
  • Young age
  • Access to swimming pools
  • Lack of supervision
  • Lack of barriers, like fencing around residential pools
  • Lack of a life jacket
  • A seizure disorder or other health conditions
  • Swimming while under the influence of alcohol

However, all it takes is a momentary distraction for a drowning accident to occur. It’s silent, takes only seconds, and can happen to anyone—regardless of swimming ability or the presence of supervision. In such an unfortunate event, it is paramount to seek immediate medical attention to prevent potentially fatal consequences.

Child Drowning Victims

Children, who typically exhibit less physical strength, awareness, and experience around water, are more likely to be victims of drowning accidents than adults. According to the CDC data from 1999 to 2019, drowning is the second leading cause of preventable death among Americans under the age of 15. Furthermore, drowning is the leading cause of death for children aged one through four, except for birth defects.

It is important to stay vigilant and follow proper safety precautions around any body of water to make sure children are safe. Here are the top CDC-recommended methods to prevent children from becoming drowning victims.

  • Teach basic swimming and water safety skills. Formal swimming lessons educate children on the importance of water safety and can reduce drowning risk. However, swimming lessons are NOT a substitute for close and constant supervision.
  • Closely supervise children. Anytime a child is in or around water, including bathtubs, adults should be watching their every move. One strategy is to assign specific adults to specific children. Or watch in pairs to allow for downtime for reading or using the phone.
  • Use the buddy system. Using adult supervision goes a long way, but no one is perfect and mistakes happen. Children should always swim with a buddy to add another layer of attention.
  • Learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). In the event of an emergency, it is important to know lifesaving techniques like CPR. While you hopefully never have to use this skill, it could save someone’s life. Organizations like American Red Cross and American Heart Association offer easily accessible CPR training classes for anyone who’s interested.
  • Wear a life jacket. Life jackets are a must for children near or in any open water source, like natural water formations or swimming pools. These critical floatation devices reduce the risk of drowning for people of all ages who are boating or swimming.


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Frequently Asked Questions About Drowning Accidents

Is it worth getting a drowning accident lawyer or swimming pool accident attorney?

Injury or loss of a loved one is a sensitive, grief-filled time. During this difficult time, you and your family may be so overwhelmed that basic tasks are difficult. Adding a legal case on top of that may seem too strenuous or confusing, but a trusted drowning accident attorney can alleviate a lot of the stress associated with a lawsuit by helping to clearly explain the aspects of the case and the appropriate measures to take to reach desired outcomes. Our knowledgeable swimming pool accident attorneys can help ensure that the victim or victim’s family receives the justice they deserve during such a difficult time.

What does a typical drowning accident case investigation process look like?

Initial investigation involves answering the general who, what, when, where, and why of the accident. Once this basic information is known, a more formal investigation begins. This phase of investigation includes collecting more detailed information through accident reports, police and first responder documents, medical records, United States Coast Guard records, and more. A careful review of all information by experienced drowning accident attorneys and qualified experts helps to determine precisely what happened, why and how it happened, and who is at fault.

How do I know if a drowning death was caused by negligence?

In some cases, this is obvious if the drowning was related to an intoxicated water motorist or pool supervisor. However, every case is unique, and fault is not always clear. In these situations, all factors must be reviewed, including whether required regulations were followed for pool areas, if a broken lock allowed a child water access, if CPR was properly administered, etc. For instance, in North Carolina, all swimming pools need to be enclosed by a barrier to be in accordance with Appendix V of the North Carolina Residential Code. An investigation by our swimming pool accident and drowning lawyers will determine if requirements like this were met when the accident occurred.

How much will I get in a drowning case settlement?

Many factors are involved in determining settlement amounts. The victim’s age and income, the family’s economic loss, emotional anguish, loss of quality of life, and more are considered. A drowning lawyer can assess the value of your case to better explain the potential recovery available.

Will the case have to go to trial?

The majority of drowning accident cases are resolved through settlement negotiations; however, some cases do go to trial. Regardless, the drowning lawyers at Edwards Kirby assemble and prepare each case under the assumption that it will go to trial. This puts insurance companies on notice, which can lead to faster and more lucrative case resolutions.

If You or A Loved One Has Been Injured Call Edwards Kirby Today!


We’re Here to Help

Call 919-780-5400 or fill out our online form to request a free consultation. You won’t pay unless we win!

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Call 919-780-5400 or fill out our online form to request a free consultation. You won't pay unless we win!