Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Pool Water: Help Keep Your Kids & Yourself Healthy & Safe

Stop blaming the Pool Water

if you are not going to manage your own illnesses before you enter the water.

There is a lot of bad press that goes around about the health of pool water. Particularly about the more dramatic of water borne diseases but I watched a news report the other night and I'm starting to get a bit disturbed about the hype that is going on.

No body wants to get sick from the pool and in particular nobody want children to get sick.

Whilst I accept that there are pool owners that don't keep their pool water as well as they should, most owners of pools really DO care. That's why responsible pool owners make sure that their pool meets every regulation they have to and most go well beyond that.

Image of Healthy & Safe Pool Water
Healthy & Safe Pool Water
Keep in mind also that pools in this country (Australia), are one of the most highly regulated industries around. Many of them are owned by Local Councils which makes them even more accountable.

Don't get me wrong, my beef is not that pool owners have to keep their pools healthy and safe. As a duty manager of a pool I willing take that responsibility very seriously. My problem is that when reports come out, outlining all the things that you can get from the pool, most times they fail to say that the reason why pools get infected; despite the best efforts of the owners, is because infected people use them.

For example:
  • Sore eyes : everybody is very quick to blame the pool if they get sore eyes from swimming. Saying things like the chlorine levels are wrong or there are too many people urinating in the pool; ironically the latter is resolved by the former. When in fact the vast majority of the time it's not the pool at all but the swimmer.

  • There are a range of medical conditions that may affect a child's enjoyment of lessons. So it should be your general rule that if your child comes down with anything, you should consult with the program supervisor about whether attendance is a good idea or not.

  • Because Bowel motions and vomiting have such an impact on swimming lessons, immediately prior to the lesson, infants should be encouraged to use the toilet and avoid eating. During the lesson, snug, fitted lightweight pants that prevent faeces escaping into the pool should be worn. Conventional nappies should not be worn in the water.

  • Finally If you or your child have diarrhea of any kind, you should NOT be anywhere near the pool.
If you don't want you're child to be infected in the pool water don't infect it by going when your sick!

Now I know that there are irresponsible people out there that don't care about others and that is were my roles comes in; to try to protect all the responsible people from the irresponsible.

I also know that sometimes people don't know they or their child are coming down with something. Again I'm happy to do my job to help protect against that.

But there are a lot of people out there that just don't know that they have a role to play in keeping the pool water healthy and hence themselves and their kids safe.

I also get that pool owners and swim schools have a role to play in educating customers about their role and most if not all do.

But, although it is probably a vain hope, it would just be nice to get some help from the media and even word of mouth to do that education, instead of the shock and awe headlines blaming the pool; when it was almost certainly infected by a customer in the first place; without the pool even knowing about it.

Is it too much to ask the pool owners get a little help. After all it is about keeping yourself and your kids healthy and safe.

Enjoy
   Richard

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