Pool owners plead guilty over accident that left teen quadriplegic
The owners of the Victorian swimming pool where a 13-year-old girl became a quadriplegic have pleaded guilty to one charge relating the accident.
Milly Yeoman was instructed to dive into water that was just 1300 millimetres high at the Swim and Survival Academy in Ballarat on November 1, 2016.
She was critically injured, sustaining damage to her spine.
Today the operators of De Kort enterprises pleaded guilty to failing to ensure persons other than their employees were not exposed to risks to their health and safety arising from their conduct.
The Department of Education is facing the same charge over the accident.
Prosecutor Andrew Palmer told the Ballarat Magistrates’ Court that Milly “was 88 kilos. 46 kilos heavier than average, and 23 centimetres taller," and should never have been told to dive in that spot.
Defence barrister, Christopher Winneke QC, said the swim school had been operating for many years without incident.
“What did happen was a freak accident that occurred in unusual circumstances,” Mr Winneke said.
He added that Milly had been taught to dive in deeper pools at the Swim Survival Academy. The trainer supervising her was experienced, and was under that impression Milly was proficient.
A directions sharing will be held on December 13 for De Kort enterprises, while the Department of Education will have a two day committal hearing in the Magistrates Court in June.
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