As we start to see warmer weather, your family can once again can enjoy outdoor fun! Playing some soccer in the yard or climbing around on the jungle gym is fun for many, but houses with swimming pools and trampolines often become the most desirable hangout spots in the neighborhood. Swimming pools and trampolines are as dangerous as they are fun if not enjoyed with safety in mind, causing the homeowner’s liability risks to increase.
If you own or wish to build/buy a pool or trampoline, first check with your insurance carrier. Some companies will raise your premium or even deny you coverage if you own a trampoline. However, many insurers simply require you to install safety features to maintain your coverage for the same rate. Either way, it’s in your best interest to notify your insurance provider of these types of additions to your home. If you don’t, any related claims can be denied because you neglected to disclose this information.
How can you make these warm-weather favorites safer for children, and even pets, therefore reducing your liability risks?
The best way to minimize the risk of accidental drowning is to build a gate or fence around your pool. A self-closing and self-latching gate is recommended for optimal safety. Consult a professional to find out more about the best child-proof barriers. With a proper barrier installed, children and pets cannot enter a pool without adult assistance and supervision.
An alternative method is to install a pool or spa cover. This type of barrier rests over the water’s surface and can be easily rolled back by hand or by a motor.
The most effective way to minimize risk of injury while jumping is to enforce trampoline rules. Allow only one jumper, over the age of six, at a time. Discourage roughhousing or performing flips while on the trampoline. Keep children and pets away from the trampoline while in use, as they could get injured if they crawl underneath a jumper.
Ensure that all springs, hooks and the frame are completely covered by a thick layer of padding to enhance safety. If desired, you can also install netting around the perimeter of the trampoline to prevent falls.
Whether you have a swimming pool or trampoline (or both), it’s important to always supervise children as they play.