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Safety, not just profit, in swimming pools

By: Atty. Ruphil F. Bañoc April 12,2018 - 07:38 PM


It is hard to imagine for an event taken to supposedly make enjoyment but turned out to be tragic.

This happened to a mother, a happy and proud one who wanted to share her happiness with her three-year-old son and brought him to an end-of-the–school year outing in a private resort. She joined her fellow teachers in the said activity.

Unfortunately, unnoticed by the mother, the boy whose nature is attracted to a swimming pool jumped into its deep portion, which is intended for adults. Unable to swim properly, he drowned in the water and died.

The Minglanila, Cebu Police chief, Chief Insp. Vernino Noserale, identified the 3-year-old victim as Leebrent Cabardo Canoneo, a resident of Barangay Alaska Mambaling, Cebu City. The victim’s mother, Ramilyn, 35, reported the incident to the police.

Based on the police investigation, the incident happened at past 9 a.m. Monday, April 9, 2018 at the pool of Circa La Playa Resort, Barangay Tungkil, Minglanilla, Cebu.

The mother failed to notice that her son had already gone far from her. There was no lifeguard on-duty at that time. Hence, the incident was not avoided.

A group of people who were swimming in the pool noticed the incident and tried to rescue the child. The victim was rushed to the hospital but he was declared dead on arrival.

May this incident serve as a wake-up call to parents, pool owners/operators and at the very least concerned local government units (LGU’s).

Understandably, this incident is tragic, especially to the victim’s mother. But during summertime, parents should be reminded to be watchful of their children when they have outings, especially swimming.

For resort owners and operators, they should see to it that they hire an adequate number of lifeguards to guard their swimming pools.

It is their responsibility. For now, they can be held civilly liable when children will be victimized in their pools.

On the government’s part, it should do its responsibility by enacting pertinent laws and properly implement the same. It should seriously require resort owners to follow safety standards.

The unavoidable questions for Circa La Playa Resort are the following: does it really have lifeguards? If no, then its fault is clear. If yes, how many lifeguards does it have? Is the number enough to man the size of its pool?

Where were their lifeguards, if there was any, at the time or when the incident occurred? Do their lifeguards know their responsibilities? Are they duly trained lifeguards? Do they undergo proper seminars? If so, why were they not in their post when the pool was supposed to be in operational hours?

Why could the management afford to collect payment for the use of the swimming pool when there was no lifeguard on duty? Why did the management not put a warning sign that there was no lifeguard on duty? At least the parents would have been warned.

If the management of the said resort cannot give clear answers to the above enumerated questions, then in my humble opinion, I don’t want to recommend this resort as a place where parents bring their children. Otherwise if they do, they should bear in mind that they should keep an eye on their children to avoid similar accidents.

To sum up all these things, the resort owner should take responsibility for the incident.

Let not take anything that endangers life too lightly. Life is precious.

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TAGS: not, profit, safety, swimming

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