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Myrtle Beach Lifeguard Company Sued Over Drowning of Florida Man


A Florida family has filed a personal injury wrongful death lawsuit against a Myrtle Beach lifeguard company that allegedly engaged in unsafe practices that contributed to the death of a Florida swimmer three years ago. The grieving wife of a Jacksonville native is suing the defendant in state court alleging negligence. Her husband was caught in a rip current while swimming at Myrtle Beach and drowned in 2020. The lifeguard company and two of its lifeguards are named as defendants in the lawsuit.

The plaintiff claims that the lifeguard company practiced “dual role lifeguarding” in which the lifeguards would handle both lifeguarding services and beach rentals. The practice was banned earlier this year in Myrtle Beach and Horry County. The lifeguard company claims that beach rentals and lifeguarding services were handled separately at the time of the incident.

The lawsuit claims that the plaintiff’s family traveled to Myrtle Beach for an extended vacation on June 18, 2020. The father and his son decided to enjoy a day of swimming in the ocean. The lawsuit alleges that there were numerous people in the ocean, but the two on-duty lifeguards did not stop the father and son from entering the water despite the National Weather Service issuing a rip current warning for Myrtle Beach earlier in the day. The lawsuit alleges that the average swimmer would have been unaware of rip currents riddling the water that day. The lifeguard company and the city of Myrtle Beach should have known that the waters were dangerous specifically because there was an alert issued by the National Weather Service.

The plaintiff contends that on-duty lifeguards were involved with beach rentals at the time of her husband’s death. She claims that the company continued involving lifeguards in beach rentals despite the United States Lifesaving Association (USLA) previously issuing a warning about the practice. In 2016, the USLA sent a letter to Myrtle Beach encouraging them to change their practices in the interest of public safety. The USLA refuses to certify any lifeguard agency that assigns dual roles to their lifeguards. The lawsuit states that the defendant’s company was not certified by the USLA at the time of the victim’s death. According to the lawsuit, after the victim was caught in the rip current, he and his son called for help, but no lifeguards responded to their pleas.

Elements of negligence

 The lifeguard company is accused of failing in its duty of care to protect the public from dangerous rip currents on numerous counts of negligence. Firstly, the public should have been warned about the potential danger of rip currents that day and directed to steer clear of dangerous waters. The company is further accused of assigning its lifeguards the dual roles of operating beach rentals while performing lifeguard duties in open defiance of recommendations issued by the USLA. As a result of their negligence, the defendant lost his life.

Talk to a Tampa, FL Drowning Attorney Today 

Families who have lost loved ones due to drowning may be able to sue based on a claim of negligence. Call the Tampa personal injury lawyers at Florin Gray today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help.



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