Swimming pools are a very high risk area. Swimming pools are especially dangerous to children and inexperienced swimmers. Since most health club swimming pools are not supervised full-time by a lifeguard, several precautions must be taken to ensure the safety of clients using the pool. The guidelines below should be followed regardless of lifeguard presence in the pool area:
Many health clubs opt to not have lifeguards on duty or only have lifeguards available seasonally. Regardless of lifeguard presence, there must be certain safety rules and procedures in place at all times to provide the safest possible environment for clients. If a club does not have a lifeguard on duty then it is very important that club staff members patrol the pool area periodically to check on clients.
There must be safety equipment located in the pool area at all times to assist lifeguards, staff or anyone assisting a client in distress. The following equipment should be available in the pool area:
Pool chemicals may become a hazard when they become moist by a small quantity of water or when they are improperly mixed, such as with other chemicals or reactive materials. It is very important that management properly store chemicals in a secure, dry location and keep the chemicals off the floor whenever possible. Only staff members that have been trained to add chemicals to pools should be allowed in the chemical storage area. Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) must be present to identify the types of chemicals used by the club. For more information please read the Safe Storage and Handling of Swimming Pool Chemicals brochure to the right of this paragraph.
Warning signs and rules postings placed around the pool area are a very effective way of keeping clients safe, especially in the absence of a lifeguard. It is recommended that the following signs and warnings be posted around the pool: