According to a recent news article from WCPO, a college freshman was landed in the critical condition unit (CCU) of a local level-one trauma center after suffering serious injury at a party. The accident occurred on property that was being rented by students of the same university as the victim.
Witnesses say there were about 300 or 400 people at this party, and there was a makeshift pool erected on the front lawn. The pool was constructed using straw bales to form the walls of the pool and then a blue tarp was laid over the top of them to contain the water. When filled, it held around 8 inches of water and it also featured a slide that the students had also constructed.
Authorities believe victim attempted to jump into the pool of water as he was jumping through someone else’s legs. Things obviously did not go as planned, as he was found by other party goers lying face down in the pool non-responsive. At this point, first responders arrived at the scene and did what they could to stabilize the victim and get him breathing before rushing him to the hospital for further treatment. Fortunately, some of the bystanders had gotten him out of the water before paramedics arrived.
One thing to keep in mind is that contrary to what many believe, it is very possible to drown in under a foot of water. In fact, people can drown in two inches of water, so long as the water is covering the victim’s nose or mouth. It is also important to be aware of the concept of secondary drowning, or dry drowning as it is also called.
As our Boston personal injury lawyers have seen in various cases over the years, a person who has been saved from drowning may still have a potentially fatal chemical imbalance in their respiratory system. This can result in serious traumatic brain injury or death and usually occurs a few hours after the victim was pulled out of the water. For this reason, it is best to call paramedics if anyone has been pulled out of the water after a near drowning. The hospital can check the victim’s pulse-ox rate and also perform other tests for respiratory problems and provide much-needed treatment if a problem is discovered.
It should be noted that the police are not investigating this incident as a crime, and there have been no allegations of negligence as of this time. In a case similar to this, if the victim or possibly the victim’s family, depending on the severity of the injury, files a personal injury lawsuit, it will be considered a premises liability action. The claim is normally initially filed with the insurance company that is carrying the homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy. In cases where the accident occurred at business, there is a good chance the business has an umbrella policy or what is known as a commercial general liability policy.
The issue will come down to whether the owner or renter of property acted in a reasonable and prudent manner so as to prevent foreseeable injuries to foreseeable persons and property.
If you have suffered personal injury in Massachusetts, call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.
Elder High School graduate Ryan Custer injured at large Oxford party, April 9, 2017, By Mark Dyer, WCPO
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Pontoon Boat Operator Charged With Criminal Negligence in Boy’s Death, Feb. 16, 2017, Boston Sport Injury Lawyer Blog