Recent $20 Million Jury Award Puts Commercial Real Estate Industry on Notice for Safety

Liability insurance for pools

Whether it’s time to launch the summer pool season, or to upgrade your amenity fitness center, you must be vigilant about safety. Especially if your facility is unsupervised.

Now is always the time to ensure all safety checks and repairs are done through your amenity fitness indoor and outdoor facilities. For you community pool and other outdoor recreational areas that includes checking heating and filtering updates and that refurbishments for your pool are in order. All fitness equipment on-property should be inspected and serviced according to the manufacturer’s specifications regularly — and that is generally regarded as more than annually. These are the most necessary steps to do you utmost to keep your tenants/owners safe. And in the event of an accident that results in a personal injury lawsuit, they could me the things that mitigate your financial responsibility. They will demonstrate that you are taking the necessary steps to maintain a safe fitness and recreational environment.

Here’s one recent development that will ensure that you never look at liability insurance the same way again.

$20 Million Awarded to Injured Tenant

A Clark County Nevada Court jury last month returned a $20 million verdict for the defendant in a civil case filed by a teenager who suffered a traumatic brain injury in a neighborhood playground accident.

In 2015 Carl Thompson, then 15, sat down on a swing set at Lamplight Village at Centennial Springs,  Nevada to send a text message. A 42-pound metal crossbar above suddenly broke and landed on his head, resulting in serious injury. It could just as easily have been a cable pull down weight machine with a loose weight holder, or a swimming pool diving board not securely fixed to the base that fails and injures someone.

A jury later found the Lamplight Village Homeowners Association responsible for Thompson’s injuries, awarding $10 million in compensatory damages for his pain and suffering – and another $10 million in punitive damages. The HOA only had $2 million of liability insurance coverage. The remaining $18 million accrued to the individual homeowners. A nightmare scenario.

Liability Insurance & Fitness Amenities

Property management companies must consider potential emergency situations – especially in a residential pool area and other outdoor, as well as indoor, facilities – and ensure that all departments are pro-active and fanatical about equipment maintenance, placement and fire safety at all times. Safety is the name of the game!

An insurance contract helps to “guarantee” the financial ability to deliver a competent defense at any trial. A current certificate of insurance (“COI”) demonstrating completed operations coverage by a general contractor (“GC”) provides a written description of any GC’s (or sub-contractor’s) insurance and should list the property as an additional insured.

An insurance certificate will not give the holder any rights beyond the contractor’s negligence, but it’s reassuring that you’ll be defended in the event of a loss caused by a GC you hired and be able to lean on their coverage. For example, Heartline Fitness hold $10,000,000 of insurance that will provider a buffer for your company and/or the owner(s), should a lawsuit be brought against them for an accident or equipment failure.

Heartline Fitness partners with American Pool, where water safety is the core value: From lifeguard training to managing pool chemistry or renovating an aquatics center, your customers’ safety is our number one focus. To learn more about key guidelines to facility safety, ask about our comprehensive facility assessment service today.