Take a Dip, Don’t Slip! Staying Safe at the Pool
Ah, the swimming pool. A place for adults to attempt to relax while the children exhaust themselves. Oh, you know how it goes: baking in the hot sun, your head on a swivel as the children scream every minute, an occasional splash or whistle blow, sunscreen application every hour. Don’t forget the constant reiteration of the “No Running!!” rule. As a parent, your main concern is the safety of the children.
Whether you’re a pool owner, employee, or a visitor, enforcing and following rules and guidelines is crucial to reduce the unique risks presented by a pool. Safety is the number one priority at any pool.
As a patron visiting the pool with your children, be mindful of these guidelines:
- Any patrons with open cuts or infected eyes should not enter the pool under any circumstances.
- All swimmers must shower prior to entering the pool.
- Children under four feet tall should be accompanied by an adult at all times. In the water, keep children within arm’s length for a quick response to danger.
- An approved swim diaper must be worn by children who are not potty-trained.
- Depending on the facility, some cloth and disposable diapers are not appropriate to be worn in the pool. Please follow guidelines set by your specific aquatic center.
- The use of alcohol or drugs is not tolerated at most swimming facilities.
- The deep-end is off limits to children who have not passed a swimming test.
- Reinforce with your children that diving in the shallow end and other dangerous jumps are not permitted. Always remind them not to run to avoid slips and injuries.
- Exit the pool immediately when required due to inclement weather.
Hotel/public pool owners and the lifeguards employed are responsible for behind the scenes precautions that ensure utmost safety. As a patron, knowing the responsibilities of the aquatic center increases your peace of mind regarding the safety of your children.
- Lifeguards are designated to a specific area, and must be able to clearly see the bottom of the pool and all other areas.
- Ensure that lifeguards are wearing a uniform for identification.
- When occupancy is increased due to a special event, the number of lifeguards on duty must be increased accordingly.
- Lifeguards must be weary of visibly infectious patrons and ask them to leave the facility.
- As a result of bodily fluid excretion in the pool, all patrons must exit and pool must be closed immediately to be disinfected.
- First-aid equipment should be easily accessible.
- A record must be kept of all injuries and other occurrences throughout each day.
- Chlorine and pH levels are required to be tested daily. Pool temperature should not exceed 90 degrees fahrenheit.
Aquatic centers follow very specific guidelines for cleanliness and safety for all patrons. Between the lifeguards on duty and the parents watching over, the safety of pools is typically well-managed. Have fun this summer!