Nothing says summer like spending a relaxing day at the pool. The contrast of cool water on a hot day is a perfect blend like sweet and spicy food dancing on the taste buds.
In the United States alone, 3,536 people died from drowning accidents from 2005 to 2014, averaging almost 10 deaths per day and thousands more pool related injuries each year.
You’ve seen them before, the gigantic signs conveniently posted right before entering the swimming pool area telling you everything NOT to do. Kind of annoying right? Well, it just so happens that these signs are meant to save you and everyone else from what otherwise could be, well, disaster!
Here’s a list of safety guidelines to remember for the next time you go for a dip:
- Use non-slip materials on pool deck, diving board and ladders.
- Mark water depths conspicuously and use a safety float line where the bottom slope deepens.
- Before diving or sliding, check to be sure other swimmers are out of the way.
- Keep rescue devices and first aid supplies nearby.
- Keep electrical appliances such as radios out of the pool area.
- Never swim after eating, drinking alcohol, or taking medications.
According to the CDC (Centers for disease and control prevention), drowning is the number one cause of unintentional death for children between ages 1-4. So we should be sure to give extra attention to children playing in or near water, to avoid accidents and death.
Here are some simple safety tips to keep children safer around swimming pool and spa areas:
- Never leave children unattended in or near water
- Kids should learn to float or swim as soon as they are able.
- There should be a fence at least 4 feet high around all sides of the pool with a locked gate to keep children out when there is no supervision.
- Lawn furniture, trees, and shrubs should not be close enough to provide an easy boost over the fence.
- Teach children what to do in case of emergency. An alarm bell that could summon help would is a good idea.
- Put toys away to avoid tripping over them.
HOT TUB & SPA
Hot tubs and spas are soothing and relaxing. They even have the potential to relieve tension and stress. Often seen as a luxury treatment, we relish in the opportunity to break away from our busy lives and enjoy a good soak. (see hot tub and spa benefits here)
But even with all of the glorious benefits, hot tubs can be unsafe and potentially hazardous. Whether at home, a luxury spa, 5-Star hotel, or even a neighbor’s house, be sure to follow these safety tips:
- Children should not be allowed in a hot tub until they can stand on the bottom and have their head completely out of the water
- A safe maximum soaking temperature is 100° - 102° and for only about 15 minutes.
- Hot water intensifies the effects of alcohol so consider juice or water.
- Shower or bathe before entering spa to remove body oils, lotions, cosmetics and hair products.
- Keep tub sanitized and properly cleaned to avoid germs from spreading and risk of infection.
- More hot tub maintenance tips here
Regular preventative maintenance is the best way to keep a safe, clean and operational pool area. Routine cleaning, debris removal and drain inspection are just some of the maintenance tasks that should be conducted regularly.
And with the many important areas to cover, here’s a checklist to make sure you’re staying on track:
- Clean deck, tile, and PVC grating.
- Keep gutters from clogging by removing the grating and cleaning at least once per year.
- Drain and clean pool surge tanks annually.
- Check sensors and auto floats to make sure they’re functioning properly.
- Inspect pool ladders, steps and rails to look for broken steps, missing bolts, wedges and loose railing.
- Feed pumps need their feed tubes replaced twice a year as they can wear out and stop working. It’s also a good idea to keep replacements in stock.
With over 300,000 drowning deaths reported each year, these water safety tips can help avoid swimming pool and spa related incidents.
Here’s a list of some of the top water safety resources providing valuable information, associations, a wide range of services and best practices. Adhering to these safety tips gives you a better chance at having a great experience.
If you have a pool or spa, or if you plan to spend time in one this summer, it’s imperative you’re aware of the dangers and know how to handle them. At SGM safety is our top priority and the safety of your customers and loved ones should not be left up to chance.
From all of us here at Schill Grounds Management, we hope you have a safe and fun summer!