Ten-year-old Tahfin Chowdhury became the sixth child in Palm Beach County to drown in 2022, after going missing on Sunday, November 27, according to the Palm Beach Post.
Described as an autistic, non-verbal child who liked the water, Chowdhury was reported missing by his family Sunday afternoon. An intensive search for him started shortly after 2 p.m., and his body was found hours later in a pond in the Turtle Cay community in Riviera Beach where he and his family lived.
Possible Wrongful Death Claim for Tahfin Chowdhury Family?
In the drowning of Tahfin Chowdhury, several factors must be considered to determine if the family has the grounds to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit. For example: Was adequate fencing or barriers in place around the community lake, knowing that an autistic child was a member of the community? What safety precautions, if any, were present that could have presented this tragic death?
Residents expect their children to be kept safe in the communities they live in, especially children with disabilities. For Tahfin Chowdhury’s family, the question now becomes, did the Turtle Cay community do enough to ensure the safety of their autistic child?
Our law firm has handled drowning cases in the past, and we have pursued property owners for inadequate or non-existent preventative measures that should have been in place to prevent a tragedy.
Drownings Common Among Autistic Children
Drowning is among the leading causes of death for people with autism, like Tahfin Chowdhury, according to studies done by the National Autism Association. Children with autism are often attracted to the water, and that requires special preventative steps, says Anna Stewart, Manager of the Drowning Prevention Coalition of Palm Beach County.
“It’s really important that [people] use layers of protection inside and outside the home, door alarms, window alarms, fencing. Obviously, supervision is most important, but we know that you can’t watch a child 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”
Accidental Drowning Liability Cases
Access to water, whether it be swimming pools, the ocean, or community lakes and ponds, is highly available in Florida, so it should come as no surprise that drowning accidents are common in Florida communities. Between 2017 and 2019, Florida ranked highest in the United States for child deaths from drowning, according to the Florida Department of Health, and fourth among all states for fatal drownings. Common causes of accidental drownings include:
- Improper safety precautions, i.e. lack of fences or barriers
- Lack of supervision
- Negligence on the part of the property owner
To get the answers needed, it makes sense to hire a firm that has significant experience in premises liability cases involving drowning deaths. The team of West Palm Beach drowning accident attorneys at GOLDLAW understand the legal rights of the victim’s family and are not only committed to getting the maximum amount of compensation possible but also to helping the family recover from their loss.
Have questions about an accidental drowning or wrongful death? Contact our office at (561)222-2222.