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Today, I read an article that is a tragic reminder of how dangerous swimming pools can be, especially for young children. Four-year-old twin boys drowned in a backyard swimming pool within 15 minutes of arriving at their grandmother’s home. Their father said he stepped away for “just a moment” to check on his mother who suffers from diabetes. When he returned, the man found his two sons floating motionless at the bottom the swimming pool. When he rescued the twins, they were alive, but unconscious; they were later pronounced dead at a local hospital. Police said the pool is surrounded by an iron fence, but it is unknown at this time whether the gate was unlocked or if it was secure and the boys managed to open it.

Swimming pool accidents can result in slip and fall injuries, submersion accidents, and drowning accidents. Stories like this should be a reminder to all parents that during the summer months there must be a heightened awareness on pool safety. According to the CPSC, drowning is still the leading cause of unintentional deaths in children younger than 5 years of age and the second leading cause of injury-related deaths, after motor vehicle accidents, among children of all ages. Even a near-drowning accident can have lifelong consequences such as brain damage that can cause memory problems, learning disabilities or permanent loss of basic functions. Sadly, the majority of these swimming pool related accidents are preventable.

Although most parents know that a child can get into trouble in a matter of seconds, parents who say they were watching their children also admit to being distracted by other activities – talking, reading, turning away momentarily, or taking care of another child. Children can lose consciousness underwater in two minutes. In four minutes, a child, underwater, can suffer irreversible brain damage. Don’t let your child suffer from death by distraction. The key to preventing these tragedies is to always have layers of protection. This includes:

  1. Installing a fence around the pool with self-closing and self-latching gates.
  2. Installing pool and gate alarms to alert you when children go near the water.
  3. Making sure pool is compliant with anti-entrapment drain covers and back-up devices.
  4. Keeping a phone near for help in an emergency.
  5. Checking the water first if a child is missing.
  6. Learning how to swim and learn CPR.
  7. Teaching children how to swim and water safety rules, such as never swim alone or play near a pool.

Since no safety system is foolproof, most importantly, stay close, be alert, and watch children in and around the pool; simple steps save lives. I encourage all parents to check out the CPSC’s pool safety website, which offers tips for preventing accidents, performing CPR and teaching kids how to swim before the Fourth of July weekend.

Mark Bello has thirty-five years experience as a trial lawyer and thirteen years as an underwriter and situational analyst in the lawsuit funding industry. He is the owner and founder of Lawsuit Financial Corporation which helps provide legal finance cash flow solutions and consulting when necessities of life litigation funding is needed by a plaintiff involved in pending, personal injury, litigation. Bello is a Justice Pac member of the American Association for Justice, Sustaining and Justice Pac member of the Michigan Association for Justice, Member of Public Justice and Public Citizen, Business Associate of the Florida, Mississippi, Connecticut, Texas, and Tennessee Associations for Justice, and Consumers Attorneys of California, member of the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Michigan and the Injury Board.


  1. Gravatar for Nick

    What a tragic story. It must be terrible to loose two children at once. It is true that most childhood drownings happen within 5 minutes of the child last being seen within the house and usually under the supervision of both parents. This just underscores the necessity of teaching your child how to swim at the earliest age possible.

  2. Mark Bello

    Nick: thanks for the comment. The public doesn't see the private contact information you provided. Please tell us more about Thanks, Mark

  3. Mark Bello

    Sorry, got it

  4. Gravatar for Nick Stocking
    Nick Stocking

    Hi Mark, When I was a young father I was out back doing yard work with my 2-year old baby, Chelsea when the phone rang. I walked into the kitchen to retrieve the phone and came back out to the yard and Chelsea was no where to be seen. My heart literally dropped. I dropped the phone and bolted to the pool. Our dog had pushed her in. Her tricycle was at the bottom of the deep end. Luckily I had taught her to swim the previous summer before she was 2 years old. She had used these skills to kick off her Ugg boots get out of her jacket and swim to the side of the pool. I am happy to say Chelsea was one of the fortunate ones and she survived to grow into an outstanding young lady. many babies however, do not survive. according to the WHO there are 380,000+ drownings each year the lions share of which are babies under 5 years old. I have taken the method I used to teach Chelsea and both my other daughters, nephews, nieces, grand son, friends kids and compiled it into a short concise no fluff ebook called "Teach Your Child How To Swim". I am selling it on Amazon at an introductory rate of just $2.99. The real payoff will be when I receive a blog from a parent with a similar story to mine. If my method saves just one little life, it will all be worth it. However, I'm hoping to save millions. I would appreciate any help in spreading the word. Thanks for your interest!!


  5. Gravatar for Nick Stocking
    Nick Stocking

    BTW since the contact info got filtered out my website and blog is

    I welcome your comments.


  6. Gravatar for Louis T. Silverman
    Louis T. Silverman

    The parents of the twins were probably devastated. Loosing two children at the same time must be terrible. Great tips on slip and fall accident prevention around the pool.

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