10 Year Old Drowns In Jacksonville Hotel Pool

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10 Year Old Drowns In Jacksonville Hotel Pool

Authorities say a 10-year-old girl who was taken to the hospital following a near-drowning at a Jacksonville hotel has died.

The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office reports the Pensacola girl was swimming at the Hilton Garden Inn pool late Saturday night with three young family members. At some point she went underwater. Two of the children tried to pull her out of the pool, while the third child ran to an employee of the property for help.

When deputies arrived at the hotel, CPR was being performed on the girl. Patrol deputies took over CPR efforts until St. Johns County Fire Rescue paramedics arrived and took the girl to Beaches Baptist. She was then air lifted to Wolfson Children’s Hospital, where she later died.


Authorities said they believe there were no adults present with the children at the time, and the pool was apparently closed to swimming before the incident.

Christopher Marlowe of The Haggard Law Firm says this most recent tragedy should remind businesses of the imperative responsibility to fully secure their pools.

“Hilton, Marriott, Hyatt, and other major hotel chains are all too familiar with the risk of drowning in their hotel and resort swimming pools.  Children are especially vulnerable in hotel swimming pools, which are usually not protected by qualified lifeguards or a vigilant staffer to monitor the pool area” says Marlowe.

The Haggard Law Firm has developed a national and international reputation for representing people injured or killed as a result of dangerous swimming pool drains and negligent supervision and maintenance of pool safety barriers. Haggard Law has earned 2 verdicts in drowning./near drowning cases in excess of $100 million, the largest in Florida’s history. (click to learn more about drowning cases)

Marlowe says, “Lifesaving equipment such as shepherd hoods and AED’s are often missing, as are landline emergency phones around the pool deck.  While accidents do happen, hotels and resorts must ensure that the required lifesaving and extraction equipment is highly visible and in good repair, to increase the probability of saving a life quickly when an incident such as this occurs.”

He adds that pools are the one hotel amenity most likely to cause death to children in a hotel and resort setting. In Florida, drowning is the #1 cause of accidental death in children under the age of

The Haggard Law Firm’s work representing victims has spurred changes in state codes and laws governing pool safety. Unfortunately, progress in the laws didn’t save this young 10-year old’s life, but Marlowe hopes through the tragedy comes a change in policies and protocols of any business that maintains a pool on its property.

“The facts and circumstances of each case are different, but despite the enactment of state laws, city and county ordinances, and adjustments in the Florida Building Code, too often large hotels and apartment complexes are not complying with these safety measures which save lives.  Pool hours of operation must be prominently placed, and enforced in order to be effective.”

Marlowe believes a methodical analysis of what occurred in this Jacksonville case will reveal concrete failures that would have prevented this latest tragedy.









Details of Jacksonville drowning credited to WJXT-TV:  and WCTV-TV/Associated Press:



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