Four Tips For Improving Pool Safety
A backyard pool provides many hours of summer enjoyment, whether you use it for splashing around with the kids or as a means of staying in shape. Your first goal should always be safety, though. Pools can be a tempting place for neighborhood children, so it's vital to put in some safety feature even if there are no kids in your home. Other safety features are a must for kids and adults alike. The following guide can help you create a safe swimming haven.
#1: Fencing Is a Must
Fence heights around pools are usually set by local laws or municipal building codes, so check with city hall before installing a fence. As a general rule, a fence should be tall enough so a child can't pull themselves over it, and the pickets must be spaced closely together so no one can squeeze between them. Gates must be self latching and positioned so a child can't access them. If you have kids in the house, it can be well worth it to add a gate alarm, as well.
#2: Consider Features to Prevent Fall-ins
A pool alarm sounds if there is any disturbance to the water. This can be a real lifesaver if a child or pet falls into the pool unsupervised. The alarms are simple to disarm when you are using the pool. Another option is a full pool cover. You need a cover that is firmly attached to the sides of the pool or a hard cover, otherwise the cover will simply give way under anyone falling into the pool. For added safety, locking pool covers are also an option.
#3: Secure Drain Covers
Most pools are surrounded by a variety of access covers, such as over the drains and water returns. These typically have a hard plastic cover. Make sure covers fit tightly so they don't come loose – the hole in the ground can cause a major injury. If you have small kids that may play with the covers, opt for covers that are screwed in place. These require a bit more work when you need access, but it is well worth it from a safety stand point.
#4: Avoid Slippery Conditions
It's a basic rule that there should be no running around a pool, but even walking can be a hazard. Skip the decorative tile right at pool edge, unless the tile comes with an anti-slip coating. It's best to opt for non-slip surfaces in all areas that could be wet in the immediate environs around the pool. Also, make sure steps leading into the water have non-slips strips installed, along with handrails. You can contact a local swimming pool contractor to install any of the safety features your pool may be missing.