Many homeowners enjoy a swimming pool in their backyard. While these water-filled oases can provide a lot of relief during the hot summer months, they can also be a liability to homeowners. In fact, about 200 young people die every year in backyard pool-related accidents in the U.S. Make pool safety a priority at your home when you follow this helpful list of Do’s and Don’ts.
- Secure your pool with appropriate barriers such as a privacy fence that latches or locks.
- Place a safety cover on the surface of your pool whenever it is not in use. Be sure to remove any ladders when you do this.
- Supervise all children in or around the pool at all times. Looking away, even for a moment, could prove deadly.
- Ensure that all young or inexperienced swimmers are wearing a flotation device when they’re in the water. There should also be an adult present with them in the pool.
- Keep the area around your pool clean and clear to avoid anyone tripping, slipping, or falling into the water.
- Be sure to drink plenty of water (not from the pool) to stay hydrated, especially on hot summer days.
- Practice safe diving. Dives should only happen from a diving board into deep water. Never dive or jump into a shallow section of the pool.
- Dry off as soon as you step out to avoid slipping and sliding as you exit the pool area.
- Speak to your insurance agent about a pool liability addendum.
- Dive into shallow water. Shallow is considered to be anything less than about eight feet deep.
- Run around the pool deck or allow any children to run on the pool deck, as this may cause injury.
- Allow any pets into the pool without proper supervision.
- Let people enter the pool if you are unsure about the state of the water. Pool chemicals should always be handled by someone who has taken a state-issued class on pool chemical safety and understands the importance of chemical balance.
- Participate in rough or rowdy play, as this could cause injury or death.
- Use glass or ceramics in the pool area.
- Enter the pool while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Push anyone into the pool under any circumstances.
When you’re a swimming pool owner, there is nothing more important than the safety of everyone who comes to enjoy the backyard pool. Having rules in place that are easy to understand and follow will help to ensure that everyone remains happy and healthy when they visit your pool. Be sure to enforce the rules with all of your visitors and have well-understood consequences when people choose not to follow your rules of safety. Setting and communicating safety expectations can go a very long way when you’re trying to promote safety this summer.