Owning a pool has its own shares of responsibilities such as preventing someone from drowning. The National Safety Council reports that almost 80 percent of all reported drowning incidences occur in residential pools and spas. As a result, anyone who owns a swimming pool risks facing lawsuits once an individual gets injured in or near the pool. However, what if you are not a pool owner but rather a tour guide introducing clients to a pool? Apparently, in the United Kingdom at least, you too can be liable for any injury accrued as a result of use of a pool.
Cory Peyton was a 15 year old teenager when hit his head on the bottom of a indoor pool at the Holiday Village resort in Albfeira Portugal. Peyton states that he was “trying to teach a girl to dive” and while demonstrating a diving method, struck his head in what he reports as a “shallow” pool. His head injury resulted in severe consequences, leaving him paralyzed in a wheelchair since the 2013 incident. Cory’s lawyers are now blaming the staff of the Holiday Village for the accident, stating that the resort “encouraged holidaymakers, including children and young persons to dive into shallow water” through its “dangerous” pool games they organized.
The target of Peyton’s lawsuit is Holiday Village’s parent owner TUI UK Ltd, who provided the holiday package to Peyton and his family. Cory Peyton is demanding that TUI UK Ltd. provide massive financial responsibility for the incident. However, the TUI’s lawyers argue that there was an obvious and very strict “no diving policy” implemented at all of their resorts. The resort’s lawyers continue their argument, stating the tour operators there had also relied on the many “no diving signs” located all over and around the pool to notify pool users of the prohibitive nature of diving in the pool. The victim’s lawyers argue otherwise.
Stephen Killalea, one of Peyton’s lawyers, continues his argument that because resort staff members continued to encourage the use of diving in their poolside games, they had “rendered such (no diving) signs as there were irrelevant and of no effect.” Furthermore, Mr. Killalea claimed that the staff had failed to demonstrate reasonable proper care and skill in response to the safety of Cory Peyton, allowing him to dive in the shallow area of the indoor pool when it could have been easily prevented by the staff. As a result, Peyton’s claim is likely to be worth several millions due to his age at the time of the accident (13 years old) as well as the severity of his injuries.