As pool owners or property managers, safety should always be the top priority. From slip and falls to drowning, there are several risks associated with swimming pools that are very serious. The most common causes of swimming pool accidents include:
Lack of Supervision
Lack of supervision is a leading cause of drowning, especially among children. Drowning is the leading cause of death among children aged 1-4. Small children should never be left unattended near a pool, even for a moment. In addition, public pools should ensure all lifeguards have proper training and a lifeguard is always on duty to prevent accidents from occurring.
Faulty Pool Equipment
Faulty pool equipment can also be a cause for concern. It is important to conduct regular maintenance checks to ensure that all equipment such as pool pumps, filters, and drains are in good working condition. Faulty equipment can cause injuries, such as suction entrapment or electrocution, and should be repaired or replaced immediately. In addition, safety covers should be in place and properly secured when the pool is not in use to prevent accidents.
Slippery surfaces around the pool area, including the deck and pool ladder, can be another common cause of accidents. It is important to ensure that the surfaces are slip-resistant and free of any hazards, such as algae or debris, that can cause slips and falls. Regular cleaning and maintenance can help to prevent these types of accidents from occurring. In addition, it is important to have proper signage in place to alert swimmers of any potential hazards and to provide clear instructions for safe pool use.
It is essential to ensure that your pool has adequate fencing and barriers to prevent children from gaining access to the water.
- California Pool Fence Requirements: In California, any property that has a pool is required to have a fence surrounding it, which must be at least 5 feet tall when measured from the opposite side of the pool. Additionally, the fence must have a self-closing and self-latching gate for pool safety, and there can be no RV access gates. If there are automatic driveway gates, they must open and close within 20 seconds. The property fence must not be more than 2 inches above the ground and any gaps between the fence must be less than 4 inches.
- New York State Pool Fence Requirements: In New York, a fence or barrier that is at least four feet high must enclose all swimming pools, and entry can only be gained through self-closing and positively self-latching doors or gates. The knob or handle that controls the latch must be at least 40 inches above the ground. When the pool is unsupervised, the gate or door must be locked to prevent access to the pool.
It is important to remind swimmers to drink responsibly and to never swim under the influence of drugs or alcohol. It is also important for pool owners and managers to enforce rules around alcohol consumption and swimming.