FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
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NEW YORK, July 1, 2014 — Everywhere across the country, public and private pool openings are making a splash—which is why there is no better time to consider the insurance and safety implications of owning a pool, according to the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.).
“You can be sued if someone drowns or is injured in your pool even if they did not have your permission to be there,” said Jeanne M. Salvatore, senior vice president and chief communications officer for the I.I.I. “So it’s important to have the proper locks and safety equipment and to have appropriate liability insurance.”
If you own a swimming pool, or are in the market for one, the I.I.I. recommends taking the following steps:
Let your insurance company know about the pool as it will increase your liability risk. Pools are considered an “attractive nuisance” and you may need additional liability coverage. Consider increasing the $100,000 minimum in your homeowners policy to at least $300,000 or $500,000 if you are a pool owner. You can also buy an umbrella liability policy, which, for an additional premium of $200 to $300 a year, gives you $1 million of liability protection over and above what you have on your home.
If the pool itself is expensive, you will need enough insurance protection to replace it in the event it is destroyed by a storm or other disaster. And don’t forget to include any deck furniture around the pool when calculating the value of your belongings.
Each town will have its own definition of what constitutes a ‘pool’, often based on its size and the depth of the water. If your pool meets the definition, you must comply with local safety standards and building and electrical codes. This may include installing a fence of a certain size, locks, decks and pool safety equipment.
“Pools offer a great way to keep cool in this heat and humidity, but they can also be dangerous,” cautioned Salvatore. “A child can drown in a few inches of water in less than 30 seconds.”
To help spread the word about the importance of pool safety, the I.I.I. is partnering with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) for the third year of its Pool Safely public education campaign (also on Twitter: @poolsafely).
Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional deaths in the U.S. for children aged five and under, according to the CPSC. “Pools offer a great way to keep cool in this heat and humidity, but they can also be dangerous,” said Salvatore. “A child can drown in a few inches of water in less than 30 seconds.”
Keep your children and other pool users safe by taking these precautions:
In addition, Pool Safely recommends the following:
Video: Swimming Pool Safety
Pinterest: Pool Safety Board