Great America has been criticized in a state agency for violating the “10/20 Rule”: after allowing 4-year-old Carlos Flores to float on the surface of the Great Barrier Reef Wave Pool for 39 seconds. With the approaching summer, such negligent rescue cases arise with disturbing regularity.
The standard for lifeguards in such locations is that a lifeguard who spots someone in trouble needs to respond in 10 second and reach the person in 20 seconds. In this case, it was 39 second before Flores was reached and it was too late. Great America was also cited by a state agency for having lifeguards stand for as much as two hours rather than the standard one hour.
The guards in these large pool facilities are trained on this rule. On a visit to the Great Wolf Lodge recently with the kids, I watched as a manager secretly throw a plastic baby in various pools to test the timing of his lifeguards.
For the full story on Great America, click here
In Florida, a different type of negligence has been alleged. In that case, Paul Peters, 50, drowned in front of lifeguards in the Daytona Beach Shores after he was mistaken for an exercising lifeguard. A witness called on the lifeguards to help Peters but another lifeguard yelled back, “That’s one of our own.” He wasn’t and by the time they realized their mistake, that small window had closed.
For the Florida story, click here