Girl Tragically Dies in Pool Suction Entrapment

Wedged in a large diameter pipe, an eight-year-old girl named Aliyah Jaico was found dead this past weekend at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Houston, Texas.

Aliyah was swimming in the hotel’s lazy-river-style pool when she vanished, which prompted her family to frantically search for her. 

At first, the authorities thought the girl had been abducted from the premises; however, after looking at the hotel security footage, the cameras revealed that Aliyah had submerged underwater in the lazy river and never resurfaced.

Thirteen hours later, she was discovered in a 30-centimeter (approximately 12-inch) pool pipe  — almost 20 feet deep into the pipe — after the water was drained. 

After the incident, an immediate inspection of the pool performed by the Houston Health Department found that the “suction outlet cover is partially missing from the suction pipe” where the girl’s body was recovered.

This inspection further found that the pool operator had “failed to obtain a pre-opening inspection” after the pool had been remodeled, and failed to produce VGBA drain cover proof of compliance documentation, which is mandatory.

Initial press reports indicated an unconfirmed problem with the pump and the lawyer for the family said there was “an issue with the flow of the water” inside the pool, but further details on whether a malfunctioning pump contributed to the suction entrapment were unavailable as of the writing of this report.

The medical examiner said Aliyah Jaico’s death was caused by “drowning and mechanical asphyxiation.” The family has already filed a wrongful death lawsuit alleging gross negligence on the part of the hotel, and an investigation is underway. 

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