How Safe Is Your Town Pool?
It is estimated Americans make 360 million visits a year to pools and water parks during the summertime.
While most of these trips are undoubtedly fun, an increasing number result in swimmers getting sick -- with respiratory illnesses, eye infections, ear-nose-throat infections and skin and mucosal infections among the most common. The good news: a little prevention, compliments of both common sense and improved water technologies, can stem the tide.
Both the Centers for Disease Control and World Health Organizations have set standards for water quality at recreational water venues. The experts say there are a variety of steps pools can take to meet these new guidelines and reduce the risk of recreational water illnesses (RWIs):
- Ensuring rest rooms are located nearby the pool
- Ensuring shower areas are available for swimmers to rinse off before heading into the water
- Using automated and computerized aquatic management systems to test and monitor the water for things like ph and chlorine levels
- Conducting manual spot checks of water
- Ensuring only children with diapers designed for swimming are allowed in the water
Health experts encourage swimmers to ask questions of pool staff if they have any concerns about the water quality.