Pool Safety Guidelines
Using your pool responsibly will ensure that it brings you, your family and friends years of enjoyment. Use the guidelines below to develop safe practices and review these rules periodically to keep current and fresh. Below you'll find some resources for more information concerning pool safety.
Layers of Protection
Supervision is always your primary layer of protection, but studies show that 69 percent of the drowning incidents occurred when parental supervision failed and there were not "backup layers" in place. Layers of protection include:
- Access doors to the pool area with high locks are a secondary layer of protection.
- Alarms on access doors are another layer of protection.
- A pool safety barrier (fence) separating the pool from your home and all access doors and entrances is one more layer of protection.
- Water survival training for a child when he/she is capable of crawling or walking to the pool.
- CPR and knowledge of rescue techniques are the final layer of protection, should there be an accident.
- As an additional layer of protection, consider an EcoStar SVRS variable-speed pump with built-in SVRS or the Stratum™ VRS (vacuum release system). They monitors and reacts to changes in suction outlet systems, adding protection against body suction entrapment risks.
The goal with instituting layers of protection is to come as close to a "fail safe" system of preventing drowning incidents as possible. Meaning, if there is a momentary lapse of supervision for whatever reason; there are several backup systems already in place.
According to the National Safety Council, drowning is a leading cause of accidental death in this country, especially for children under five. Although the greatest percentage of drowning occurs in natural aquatic settings, (e.g., oceans, lakes, quarries, etc.) drowning does occur in swimming pools. The water depth of any pool is sufficient for drowning to occur. The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports the drowning of children in even water buckets and toilets.
Protecting young children from accidental drowning in all aquatic environments, whether natural or constructed, is a primary concern of the aquatic industry, health and safety organizations and regulatory groups. It is the responsibility of the parent, caretaker and pool owner to prevent accidents.
Improper diving or sliding, alcohol consumption, horseplay, or roughhousing in and around swimming pools may lead to serious neck and spinal injuries including paralysis, in the form of quadriplegia or paraplegia. A number of these injuries occur yearly, with the overwhelming majority occurring in shallow water. A number of people who ignored these rules and chose to dive into shallow water are now paralyzed. The facts show that many of these were experienced divers. Don't let this happen to you. Inform family and guests who come to enjoy your pool of the safety rules you have established.
Chemicals needed for clean, sanitized water are potentially harmful when stored or used improperly. If mixed with other chemicals or elements, explosions and fire can occur. Read the label and follow manufacturers' instructions. Always store chemicals where children cannot reach them.
Water is an excellent conductor of electricity. Electrical shock or electrocution can occur in a pool if live electrical current flowing through appliances and devices (including current from a telephone) comes into contact with the water. Make sure all electrical appliances and devices are protected by a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).
Cuts, Contusions, and Abrasions
The pool environment, as well as associated products and equipment, can be a source of injury to users. Slipping and falling can result in cuts or scrapes, or broken legs and arms. Horseplay, improper use of equipment or failure to follow manufacturers' instructions and warnings can result in serious trauma and permanently disabling injuries.
For more tips from the National Spa and Pool Institute, visit their Web site at http://www.nspi.org/.
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