Cowen Edwards Trial Lawyers represents families after tragic drowning incidents in ponds in the Fort Lauderdale area. Families need to know about the support that’s available if a property owner, a business, or the City of Fort Lauderdale contributed to the danger that caused the loss of life in an unsafe retention pond. Our wrongful death lawyers offer free consultations to grieving families. Please contact our offices to talk about your options in a confidential case review.
Retention Pond Dangers in Fort Lauderdale
Florida gets a lot of downpours and all that rain has to go somewhere. Retention ponds are used to collect rainwater until it can safely soak into the ground. They prevent flooding in some areas, but they also carry risks when unsuspecting children or adults jump in to go swimming.
Some retention ponds are set up with benches and picnic tables nearby. They give the impression of a recreational park. However, what these ponds don’t have are “no swimming” signs and other warning signs alerting people to potential dangers. In some cases, barriers should be erected or natural barriers allowed to grow in order to keep young people from being tempted to dive into a retention pond unsafe for swimming.
When these precautions aren’t taken, the property owners of the land or the City of Fort Lauderdale can be held liable for a victim’s injuries or a family’s devastation after the loss of a life to drowning.
Property owners and local government officials will fight to try to blame the victims for their own deaths. But grieving families can seek help from a Fort Lauderdale Drowning Accident Lawyer to protect their rights at such a vulnerable time. A skilled lawyer at Cowen Edwards investigates what happened and gathers the evidence necessary to hold an at-fault party fully responsible. Our lawyers also fight to get the most support possible for families who will need financial safeguarding, now and in the years ahead.
Who Is Responsible for Retention Pond Drownings?
Property owners and operators are usually found at fault in pond drowning cases. They can be held financially liable for any tragic death that the negligent action or inaction of a property owner contributes to.
The victim’s families can file a wrongful death claim. This civil claim would earn support after proving that the at-fault party could’ve done more to prevent the devastating accident.
These and other potential at-fault parties may have to provide support to your family after a loved one is tragically taken in a drowning:
- Property owners
- Property management companies
- Housing Associations
- Business owners
- The City of Fort Lauderdale
- Resort and Golf Course Owners
- Construction companies
Negligence for Pond Owners
Property owners and city departments owe visitors, residents, and even unauthorized guests a legal “duty of care.” Everything possible must be done to protect swimmers and waders who might enter a retention pond. Everything possible must be done to keep swimmers, especially curious children, out of ponds that are dangerous and off-limits for swimming.
Signs might be in place to warn swimmers of hazards, but we all know that curious children can ignore signs on their way to an enticing body of water. They may not even be able to read the sign in the first place. It’s why the owners of local private bodies of water could be liable if someone is able to reach a lake and suffers injury or a tragic death while swimming.
These are just a few of the acts of negligence that could leave a lake owner, a business owner, or the City Parks Department liable for a drowning:
- A lack of warning signs
- A lack of barriers around retention ponds
- Unsafe drains and spillways that might trap swimmers
- A lack of warning about dangerous conditions such as sudden depth changes
- Improper supervision by property and business security staff
- A lack of safety equipment and rescue devices
Florida has laws about how steep slopes into man-made ponds can be. It’s something the City of Fort Lauderdale and property management companies must be aware of.
Pond banks have to be a more gradual grade to make it less likely that people will tumble down embankments and into the water to drown. When property owners ignore these types of legal requirements and someone drowns, owners can be held liable for the pain and suffering and the financial turmoil created for the family left behind.
What Type of Support Can a Wrongful Death Claim Earn?
Florida requires an executor for the state of the deceased to file a wrongful death claim on behalf of the family. The executor will usually be named in the victim’s will and is usually the victim’s spouse or child.
A Fort Lauderdale Wrongful Death Lawyer can help a family file a claim and make sure the at-fault party can’t escape justice.
Your family’s lawyer would be demanding support for these and other factors the family has endured and will endure:
- Any medical bills built up before the victim passed away.
- Funeral and burial expenses.
- Any damages suffered by a victim who did not pass away immediately after an accident.
- The income the victim would have continued to provide the family over a lifetime.
- Support for the loss of care and guidance the deceased would have provided in the years to come.
- The loss of parental companionship and instruction for the children of the victim.
- All emotional trauma suffered by family members.
- The loss of companionship and intimacy suffered by a spouse.
- Support for parents who have lost a child to a pond drowning.
Contact a Fort Lauderdale Pond Drowning Lawyer
Losing a loved one in a drowning will leave you and your family devastated and feeling very vulnerable. At a time when your family should be allowed to grieve a loved one, they may have to take action to hold an at-fault party responsible and to protect their futures.
When individuals or businesses contribute to the factors that lead to a drowning at a man-made or natural pond, a wrongful death claim may be necessary. To find out the level of support your family should expect, contact the Fort Lauderdale Drowning Accident Lawyers at Cowen Edwards Trial Lawyers. We offer a free, confidential case review for all Florida families who have lost a loved one. There’s no obligation for this initial consultation.
You also won’t need to worry about paying for our services in a wrongful death case. We don’t get paid unless we win your case for your family. Then our fee comes out of the support an insurance company is forced to provide.