Guest post by Mark Tomich
Pools are a fantastic asset to any home – who doesn’t dream of taking a cool dip in the middle of a hot summer day, or enjoying a refreshing workout first thing in the morning? Despite the advantages, owning a pool also comes with responsibility.
Anyone who owns a swimming pool should ensure they take the necessary precautions to make it a safe environment for everyone to enjoy. Preventing injury should be your top priority, as pools are a potential hazard. Luckily, most dangers can easily be avoided as long as you follow the following guidelines.
Build a Secure Fence
The first step is installing a fence with a child security gate around your pool. This is the easiest way to secure the pool, as it will prevent pets and small children from accessing the swimming pool without any supervision.
Some areas will have a law dictating how high your fence has to be – you should always check with your local council first to ensure you are meeting their regulations. Otherwise, the recommended height is at least 1.5 metres (or 5 feet), and you can see other checklists to go over before you install a pool fence on a PDF found here. You should also perform regular checks to make sure the fence is secure, stable and any that could be used to climb over the fence should be removed.
Install an Alarm
Installing a pool alarm is a great way to notify you if someone has entered the water. Some models will go off in your pool area, as well as your home, so if anyone has wandered outside without supervision, you will be sure to find out. Here you can see a video that shows how pool alarms function.
Cover Your Pool
The best way to secure your pool is to provide an impenetrable cover over your entire pool. It is always best to put in more than one security measure to prevent anyone from accidentally falling into the pool. If your child were to somehow breach the fence, then you would have the extra protection in place to help prevent any unfortunate accidents.
Additionally, it will also help to keep your pool clean and hygienic by preventing any leaves or debris from falling into the pool. This especially comes in handy during the winter months when your pool won’t be used as often.
The area surrounding the pool can quickly become very slippery as water gets splashed around. Slips can lead to accidental injuries and people potential falling into the pool. To help avoid this, you should ensure the surface around your pool is non-stick.
Pool Safety Equipment
Having pool safety equipment placed near your pool could really come in handy if any accidents were to occur. You should always make sure they are kept within arm’s reach, somewhere near the pool within easy access and not in the house or shed. There is no point having this equipment if it won’t be on-hand when you need it most.
It may further be of use to have life rings available; inflatable vests and other flotation devices as well. Ideally, any children who are unable to swim should wear a life jacket if they are going to be spending time around the pool.
Additionally, ensure that drains with anti-entrapment covers are installed to prevent anything from getting tangled in the drainpipes. This includes hair, clothing, or other accessories. Inspect it regularly to ensure nothing has clogged your drain.
Education is Key
Take some time to educate your children on how to use the pool safely. Even if you have older children who can swim, you should educate them to always keep the gate closed in case any younger siblings or pets might wander in. Other rules could include things such as no running around the pool or diving into the pool.
Make it a priority to teach all of your children to swim early on. The sooner they can swim, the better. You should even try and take some first aid and CPR classes in case any emergencies were to occur.
To further promote safety around your swimming pool you may want to think about putting up signage. You may find some examples here. These can help to promote safety and even come in handy if accidents were to occur, such as from those displaying CPR techniques.
Cleaning Your Pool
Your pool should be well maintained and kept clean and disinfected. This is particularly important when your pool is being used frequently – make sure you change the water on a regular basis. Maintain PH levels with chlorine, especially during the winter months.
Of course, pool chemicals should be safely stored to avoid your pets or children from ingesting them. Keep them in a secure place, such as the garage, and avoid using them in the presence of pets and children.
With just a few simple precautions, your focus can shift from worrying about potential dangers to just enjoying the many benefits of having your own pool. Preventing accidents is easy as long as you follow our basic steps. All it takes is a small amount of investment and you’ve got yourself (and your family) covered.