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10 Most Common Attractive Nuisances

        Culture | Lawsuits

9
Swimming Pools
Locking a poolside fence may help prevent kids from going into a pool area without permission.
Locking a poolside fence may help prevent kids from going into a pool area without permission.
iStockphoto/Thinkstock

Swimming pools, as appealing and potentially dangerous as they are to children, have been the focus of many attractive nuisance cases. The absence of a secure fence and the presence of additional temptations such as slides or diving boards can make it harder for property owners to avoid liability, especially if the pool is in an area where children are known to play.

In one case, a Georgia court ruled that homeowners could be held accountable for the drowning death of a 2-year-old boy in their swimming pool, even though all parties agreed that the child was not invited onto the property [source: Gregory et al. v. Johnson et al.]. In that instance, the court cited the lack of any fence or other enclosure, the pool's "playground-type slide on an open lot" and the property's close proximity to an elementary school as factors in its decision.

In another Georgia case, the family of a 4-year-old girl was permitted to continue its wrongful death suit against an apartment complex after the court heard evidence that the pool area was fenced, but not securely gated, allowing children easy access to the pool area [source: Lofton v. Heritage Realty Company et al.].

Property owners do sometimes prevail in swimming pool cases, usually when they are able to show that trespassing children gained access to pool areas despite the owners' best efforts to keep them out with high, secure fences and locked gates.


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