Swimming pools are meant to be fun and even though there are dangers involved, you want your kids and guests to just enjoy themselves. There are simple things you can do to keep your pool safe for loved ones. It is important to make sure your pool is always safe and clean. Public pools have to stick to strict regulations when it comes to water chemicals and pool safety, so you should think of your pool in the same way. You don’t want to let pool cleaning get overlooked not ignore broken rails or loose tiles.
- Chemicals: Proper chlorine levels of a pool are important because an unsanitary pool can cause serious health problems. Outdoor pools lose chlorine much faster than indoor pools, so you want to be checking the levels twice a week. If the pool is used daily, then you need to increase your chlorine checks to 5 times a week. Use a chlorine block in the skimmer of the pool to ensure a constant stream of chlorine is delivered at all times. You also need to understand how water chemistry impacts sanitation because acidic or basic water can damage the pool lining and cause algae growth. Avoid this damage or unpleasant odors by keeping up with your chlorine and filtration.
- Water Intakes: Most pools have three water intakes designed for cleaning the pool. Underwater drains and intakes can cause a suction hazard. The central drain at the bottom of your pool is designed to remove debris and sediment and many children have had loose clothing snagged in these. Once clothing is caught it can be difficult to pull away and drowning can occur. Protect swimmers by turning off all intakes and suction while people are swimming.
- Keep your equipment safe: Slipping is the number one cause of accidents at a pool. Most pool surroundings are concrete, plastic or plaster which gets slippery and is a hard surface to fall on. It is also common to slip on stairs or when getting in and out of a pool. The best way to prevents slips and falls is with proper maintenance, so you should wash the stairs and surfaces at least once a week, by hand. This prevents the buildup of algae which can create a slippery covering.
- Off Limits when not in use: It is essential to have a pool fence around the pool with a latched gate. This prevents curious kids from getting too close to the pool when they play in the yard. It is also a good idea to have a pool safety cover that locks in place when the pool is not being used. Accidental drowning happens every year, so using both of these items will keep your family and pets protected.
- Avoid horse play: The pool is for fun, but you need to be careful. Some rough play in the pool is acceptable but running should never be allowed. Surfaces around pools are slick which makes slipping likelihood when running around. Additionally, never have a diving board when the water is less than 10 feet deep to avoid hitting the bottom. You also want to make sure that you have adequate flotation devices near the pool edge.
You want to enjoy your pool and you want other to enjoy it too, so take care and keep the area safe at all times. You can still have fun while taking precautions, and your pool can be the center for amusement for years to come.