A pool management company is under scrutiny following the near-drowning of a 14-year-old boy at a Georgia pool where witnesses say lifeguards didn’t help rescue the boy from the pool or perform CPR.
Brionne Sloan was with his family at Brown’s Mill Family Aquatic Center, which has a contract with USA Pools to manage the pool. This includes providing lifeguards and other pool staff.
Brionne was swimming in the deep end of the pool when he went under water for some unknown reason. Sloan’s mother, Melissa, later found out that another swimmer was responsible for pulling him from the water and someone else pulled him to the side of the pool.
Sloan's mother says she didn’t realize that it was Brionne who was lying unresponsive at the side of the pool as word spread that the child was dead. Someone yelled to Sloan that it was her son and when she got to him, no one was tending to him. A woman from the crowd rubbed and patted Brionne’s back until he started to throw up.
Sloane was about to get into the ambulance with her son when the man who had lifted him out of the pool told her that he’d asked a lifeguard why they didn’t help. According to the man, the lifeguard said he didn’t know how to swim and another said that he didn’t know CPR.
Brionne was brought to a hospital where he was on a ventilator in the ICU. After several days, he was able to breathe on his own and was fortunately released from the hospital and is expected to make a full recovery.
Questions still surround those involved in the incident, as well as the pool management company, and an investigation is underway to determine what happened.
This is not the company’s first legal issue. 11Alive News reporter Valerie Hoff looked into the company’s history and found several lawsuits filed against the company and the owner Troy Legg. The most serious suit cited another near drowning in Douglasville, Ga.
There are four other lawsuits against the company in four states regarding pay and contract issues. At least four cities throughout the country have stopped using the company due to a number of problems including drug abuse at pools, unqualified life guards, lack of chlorination and insufficient background checks.
Marie Garret is the city manager of Brookhaven, a suburb of Atlanta. She discussed her dissatisfaction with USA Pools at a city meeting saying, “Simple things, like background checks, were not conducted. We were led to believe they were done but they were not. We then did our own background checks, we had one with an outstanding warrant. The chief was notified, and a person was arrested when he reported for duty.”
11Alive News reached out to Legg, his attorney and his family, but no one provided comments on any of the situations due to pending litigation.