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Family’s warning of holiday swimming pools after daughter almost drowned

Darcey with her parents Alex and Gareth.
Darcey with her parents Alex and Gareth.

A couple have warned others about the dangers of swimming pools in holiday resorts after their daughter almost drowned when her hair became entangled in a filter.

Seven-year-old Darcey Morgan was held underwater for two minutes and had to be resuscitated while on holiday in a five-star resort in Lanzarote.

It happened last year and her mother and father have now launched legal action against the tour operators TUI UK Ltd, after the incident at the five-star H10 Rubicon Palace in Playa Blanca.

Darcey’s mother Alex, 33, said: “People need to be extra vigilant with these pool filters, put your hand over them to check them, and make sure there are life guards who are trained. Children live in these pools on holiday and they are meant to be five-star booked through a family holiday company so you would expect them to be safe.

“Everybody knows the dangers of water but when you go into these resorts you expect there to be trained lifeguards and you’d expect the filters to be safe, but this one wasn’t.”

The family, who are from Tingley, were enjoying a two-week holiday in April 2017 when the disaster nearly struck. Darcey, who attends Hill Top Primary in West Ardsley, had been playing with her cousin in the pool when she disappeared near to a waterfall.

Alex added: “Luckily there was a scuba-diving team in the hotel and one of them was able to do the CPR.

“I can’t even put what happened into words, it’s something that we’ll never get over. Luckily children are more resilient and Darcey has come on in leaps and bounds but we’re not out of the woods yet.

“There’s not a day goes by when I don’t think about it. The whole incident was an absolute nightmare and we truly thought at one point that we were going to lose our little girl. It was undoubtedly the worst day of our lives.”

TUI UK Ltd said they regularly audit their hotels in respect of health and safety, adding: “As soon as we were made aware we started a thorough investigation together with relevant external pool experts and our hotel partner.

“We have been in contact with the family to offer support, however as this is now a legal matter it would be inappropriate to comment further.”

Law firm Irwin Mitchell LLP are acting on behalf of the Morgan family.