Safety and Sanitation for Spas Swimming Pools Fitness Rooms
Swimming pool safety is handled by local authorities such as your county and city governments. Recently, the CDC has worked with the NASCO (National Aquatic Safety Company Organization) to develop a Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC) that is expected to transform the standards of excellence to prevent disease and injuries and to actively promote health water experiences. This is expected to affect both the recreational world of water and the swim fitness world of water. With the advent of baby boomers in the United States learning about the advantages and varying intensity levels of swim fitness, the timing for this new standard could not be better for American citizens.
"All rules and regulations are handled by your local authorities. Rules and regulations will vary according to local codes. Please use the following as a guide only. Refer to your specific governing body."
Rules on Sanitation for the Swimming Pool
There are certain rules and pieces of equipment that a public and semi-public or club needs to be aware of to protect both the facility and the patrons of the swimming pool.
With the lack of funding, greater reliance upon the management of the facility and the concerned patrons is needed. The items presented here are simply for a starting point to determine how your swimming pool facility might improve.
Sanitation and safety are items that pay dividends on the back end. Yes, buying the needed equipment, maintaining the needed equipment, hiring qualified personnel is expensive. The most expensive item for a swimming pool or any fitness facility is sickness. Controlling the air quality, actively managing the sanitation of the swimming pool water are items that must always be priority one.
In this Hub, we have compiled 12 safety must for swimming pools and 5 safety musts for pools with lifeguards. We went on to showcase many of the pieces of equipment that support safety including shower heads, CPR masks, etc...
As the United States is facing the health crisis of obesity and high cost of care, the benefits of swim fitness will become more self evident. It is my hope that as the activity of the swimming pools increases, the safety structure is increased. Just one illness that is preventable is not acceptable. Our health is our most valuable asset. Managers and swimming pool patrons alike should know what to look for in a well managed swimming pool facility. This is simply a starting point for a discussion and periodic review. Journey with us and see firsthand over 10 different signs that can promote your swimmers to help in your safety measures with special emphasis upon showering before swimming.
Swimming Pool Shower for Safety
Safe Swimming Poster
Cleanliness Counts - Super Sustainable Practice
- Encourage showering - give written reminders twice - once in the locker room and again before entering the swimming pool.
- Encourage cleansing showers.
- Encourage nude showers, shower before the swim suit is put on.
Purpose: 80% of the chemicals used can be reduced with active management from the swimming and/or spa participants.
Less chemicals means big savings on the maintenance costs but more importantly less chemicals hitting your guests skin, hair and swim suits.
Swimming Pool Safety Poster
Safety Equipment Mandatory for Swimming Pools
"Each pool, excluding whirlpools and
wading pools, shall be provided with a shepherd’s crook type pole.
In addition, for each lifeguard chair, or when a pool is 30 feet or
more in width and does not have lifeguard chairs, there shall be
provided at least one of the following: a ring buoy having a minimum
outside diameter of 20 inches, a rescue buoy, a rescue tube
or a torpedo buoy. Each ring buoy shall be attached to a 1/4 inch
rope having a length not less than 11/2 times the maximum width
of the pool or 50 feet, whichever is less."
source: Environmental Health Guy
- Shower with Soap
- Shower Before Swim Suit, Ala Shower Nude
- Shower Before Swimming
- Shower After Toilet
- Shower After Hot Tub and Before Swimming
Remember the goal is to minimize the amount of chemicals used in the swimming pool.
Remind Guests Twice - Two Visual Reminders - Display Posters:
- In Locker Room - Preferably in the Bathroom
- In Spa or Pool Area
Pool Water Temperature
"POOL WATER TEMPERATURE. (a) Pools except whirlpools. The water temperature of indoor pools, except whirlpools, shall be between 72ºF. (25ºC.) and 90ºF. (32ºC.). The air temperature at an indoor pool shall be at least 72ºF. The minimum water temperature for outdoor pools shall be 65ºF. (18ºC.). An accurate thermometer shall be located in the pool water return line and shall be accessible for observation by the pool operator. (b) Whirlpools. The water temperature of whirlpools may not exceed 104ºF. (40ºC.)." 
Must for Safety - Safe Swimming Pool Operators Do....
7 MUSTS To Plan for Emergencies:
1. Have a telephone 200 feet away from the spa or pool with clear signage
2. Have depth of water clearly posted
3. Have safety equipment clearly visible
4. Have a first aid kit in full view
5. Have quick access to a rescue board
6. Have a shepherd’s crook type pole
7. Have a life ring
5 MUSTS to Keep the Swimming Pool or Spa Clean and Sanitized:
1. Have signage both at the swimming pool AND in the locker room reminding about showering before entering the public waters. This signs will save you substantial dollars in chemicals - best investment for a spa and/or swimming pool.
2. Have designed their facilities so patrons must walk through the shower before entering the pool or spa area.
3. Have a bathroom within a short walking distance of the pool or spa.
4. Test the water for both disinfectant levels and ph levels twice daily.
5. Levels for ph in s swimming pool should range from 7.2 to 7.8. "The most desirable level for pools and spas is between 7.4 and 7.6." 
5 MUSTS for Safety with Lifeguards On Duty:
1. Lifeguards are qualified and certified.
2. Lifeguards are easily identified.
3. Lifeguards are provided, a rescue tube with harness is provided to each lifeguard on duty, spine board and two (2) durable blankets in each pool area.
4. No distracting duties shall be assigned to the Lifeguard - they have one purpose only - safety of the swimmers in the pool.
5. All patrons shall respect the Lifeguard or be subject to removal from the swimming pool facility.
NASCO is the company that set the rules for safety. NASCO stands for National Aquatic Safety Company. NASCO has worked closely with the CDC to develop the The Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC).
Model Aquatic Health Code
The MAHC is coordinated by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and began through an initial grant funded by the National Swimming Pool Foundation (NSPF). This code once completed could be a source for regulatory agencies at the state and local government level to adopt into standards. The areas covered in the code range from water disinfection, filtration, construction, air quality, operation, ect. Each topic area has a Technical Committee made up of a diverse group of industry professionals with experience in their area of expertise. In fact, Dr. John Hunsucker (President of NASCO) is a member of the Technical Committee for the Lifeguarding & Bather Supervision Committee. Some elements of the proposed code have even gone up for a public comment period, be sure to check it frequently.
Aquatic Facility Inspection
A facility inspection uses the NASCO four point standards: Safety, Perception of Safety, Legal Liability and Guest Satisfaction , all points of concern for an aquatic facility.
It is an inspection that covers two days and identifies exceptions to the standards of care within the aquatics industry.
A facility inspection is recommended every 2 to 3 years.
Signs Promote and Guide Guests and Patrons
Signs could also be placed behind toilet doors requesting customers to wash hands thoroughly and to shower after using the toilet.
Showers shall be supplied with water at a temperature of at least 90° F and not more than 115° F with temperature controls that prevent scalding.
Every owner and every operator shall ensure that notices are displayed at the entrance to each shower area and at every entrance to the deck used by bathers.
Water Temperature Guidelines for Pools Spas and Showers
- Whirlpools. The water temperature of whirlpools may not exceed 104ºF. (40ºC.).
- Swimming pools.....
- pH Control. The pH of pool water shall be maintained within a range of 7.2 through 7.8
- Air temperature
- Shower temperature
Safety signs should include - "do not use this pool if you have had diarrhoea in the past week."
The Need for Swimming Sanitation Test Strips
pH Guidelines for Akalanity in the Swimming Pool
Maintain the swimming pool within a range of 7.2 and 7.8 pH alkaline levels.
"The pH levels for swimming pools are measured on a scale that ranges from 0 to 14. Where a reading of 0 indicates an extremely strong acid base (acidic water) and a reading of 14 means a very strong base (basic water). 7 which is at the middle of the scale, means that the water is very neutral. This in fact is the neutral point for water. The most desirable pH level for a swimming pool or spa is between 7.2 and 7.6."
Swimming Sanitation Test Strips - Pools and Hot Tubs
Swimmers I feel should bring their own test strips to check the water for proper chlorination and pH levels.
Sanitation test strips can be purchased at most home improvement and pool supply stores or online for about $10.00 for 50 strips.
Follow manufacturers’ instructions.
Free chlorine levels should be 1–3 ppm, or bromine level should be 2–5 ppm.
The pH level should be 7.2–7.8. At a pH above 7.8, chlorine will not effectively kill germs. At a pH below 7.2, chlorine will actually be more effective, but swimmers might experience skin or eye irritation.
I keep a laminated poster in my kit of chemicals next to my hot tub as a reminder.
- ISDH: Public Swimming Pool and Spa Program
ISDHs Environmental Health Program staff train local health department personnel on how to maintain a safe and healthy pool or spa environment, and they provide technical assistance. They also conduct a one day swimming pool training session for po
- In Some Swimming Pools, a Nasty Intestinal Parasite - NYTimes.com
A swimming pool can offer relief from summer heat, but swimmers should know what they are jumping into. It could be a soup of nasty parasites.
- CDC - Cryptosporidium - Recreational Water Illness (RWI) - Healthy Swimming & Recreational Water
Education and information about cryptosporidium, how it can be spread through swimming pools and other recreational water, why it's important to protect yourself from it and steps for doing so.
Have you seen a beautiful outdoor swimming pool without an outdoor shower?
Showering Pays Dividends
Chlorine (the disinfectant used in the pool) becomes less effective with more bacteria.
The more bacteria, the more the chlorine "demand" will be and thus the more chlorine needed.
More chlorine means more expense.
Showering will pay dividends in both sanitation and in lessened chemical costs.
Please Shower Before Swimming
Showering before swimming can help the amount of chemicals added to the water. Public and private swimming pools can see a significant decrease in their chemicals IF the right sun tan lotion is used and IF showering before swimming is made part of the routine.
I am amazed at the number of resort swimming pools who have invested thousands in their décor and yet no shower is near by. An outdoor shower is relatively inexpensive and can pay dividends in the decrease in chemicals use.
Regulations to me are not the answer. The answer is education and training management and swimmers alike to understand the connection to good hygiene for the swimming pool.
We have made major steps in washing our hands and washing your hands for employee training have signs in every restaurant I visit. Yet swimming pools typically are missing these signs. Worst yet, is to post "the sign" with no reinforcement or kind reminder by management, swim fitness instructors and parents.
Beautiful resort swimming pools must have an outdoor shower. It is not optional for their swimmers comfort and health.
We have learned about bacteria and how it is unseen. The sight of an outdoor shower should be a fundamental item for our beautiful outdoor swimming pools.
Zero-Depth Swimming Pool Entry
Non Slip Tape on Swimming Pool Stairs
Non slip tape for swimming pool stairs provides both a physical and visual benefit. The physical properties of the non slip tape help prevent injuries by providing traction on stairways and other surfaces of the pool where the elevation changes. Non slip tape also provides a visual warning which is equally critical in preventing injuries.
The best entrance to a swimming pool is the zero-depth. The zero-depth is convenient for young and old and alike and is the most natural, however, the zero-depth takes up valuable and very expensive room for a swimming pool. The zero-depth entrance is an entry point at the pool’s shallow end that is nearly even with the deck - as your bare foot enters, similar to a natural beach, the water gradually gets deeper with each step.
The majority of swimming pools do not have this luxury and have stairs which need the color coding and the texture for the safety of the swimming pool step.
The best case scenario where money is available is multiple points of entry with multiple types of entrance.
Shower Head Safety
Keeping your swimming pool safe is a product of proper sanitation. Not having sufficient pressure with your showers can create an undue burden upon the chemicals you must use in your swimming pool. Chemicals are expensive but sickness if even more costly for your family and/or the patrons of your swimming pool facility.
The Federal Energy Policy Act of 1992 mandates that "all faucet fixtures manufactured in the United States restrict maximum water flow at or below 2.5 gallons per minute (gpm) at 80 pounds per square inch (psi) of water pressure or 2.2 gpm at 60 psi."
Warning: The following section is for information purposes only; I am not advocating egregious violations of federal law as some trouble-making rebel might. Do not endanger your status as a law-abiding citizen who takes wimpy showers.
Many people now hack their showers — or customize them, if you prefer. You can take your shower head down, pull the washer out with a screwdriver, and remove the offending intrusion that is restricting water flow. It can be a tiny second washer or it can be a hard plastic piece. Just pop it out and replace the washer. Sometimes it is necessary to trim it out using a penknife.
Showers must be maintained in an operable condition.
Many have stated that each shower shall provide 3 to 5 gallons of water per minute for the best sanitation results. The water pressure in your shower head may cost your more in water but save you 10 times in the amount of chemicals you use in your swimming pool.
- CDC - Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC) - Pools & Hot Tubs - Healthy Swimming & Recreational
The Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC) is created to provide uniform guidelines for the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of swimming pools, hot tubs, and other disinfected swimming venues to prevent recreational water illnesses and prom
- Swimming pool bans child floats under health and safety laws - Worldnews.com
A swimming pool has banned floats after a child almost choked on one he was trying to eat. Sarah Swaine with one of the floats Photo: NOBLE DRAPER Harpers, a privately-run company which runs Sports Centres on behalf of scores of local authorities acr
- Environmental Health Guy.com
- Illinois Government Swimming Act
HEALTH FACILITIES (210 ILCS 125/) Swimming Facility Act. (210 ILCS 125/1) (from Ch. 111 1/2, par. 1201) Sec. 1. Short title. This Act shall be known and may be cited as the Swimming Facility Act. (Source: P.A. 9218, eff. 62801.)
- Chemicals and Swimming Pools
As these examples demonstrate, the United States needs to do a better job of maintaining its public swimming pools. That task will involve standardizing pool codes, which currently are regulated at the state and local level and vary widely. Such an e
Swimming Pool Safety and Sanitation
Swimming pool safety and sanitation demands a team effort. Understanding the importance of sanitation upon our health and safety is only the first step. Safety saves lives and prevents illness. Take the time today to take the safety to the next level for your swimming pool today!
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