Managing Swimming Pool Liabilities

Having a backyard swimming pool can be great on those hot summer days. Being able to step outside and hop in the pool certainly has its benefits. However, swimming pools also come with various liabilities as a home or property owner.

As the owner, you are liable for the safety and wellbeing of all swimmers in your pool. You could be held responsible for any injuries or deaths that take place in or around your swimming pool. Review these tips to reduce your liability risks and safely enjoy your pool.

Reducing Drowning Risks

Install safety fences around the pool with a locked latch. Installing an alarm on the latch can alert you if anyone is entering the pool unsupervised. Even if your yard is fenced, it is important to place an additional fence around the pool area. Cover the pool when it is not in use.

Supervise all swimmers at all times. Designate one adult to supervise and switch off as necessary. The designated supervisor should not be drinking alcohol and should be free of distractions, including looking at his or her phone.

Keep up to date with CPR and first-aid certifications and consider taking lifeguarding courses. Know how to recognize and respond to swimmers in distress. Keep lifesaving equipment near the pool and know how to use it properly.

Make sure all swimmers have basic swim skills and practice water safety. Use U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets as directed.

Do not allow swimmers to horseplay in the pool or run on the pool deck.

Keep the pool area adequately lit, in good condition, and free of tripping hazards.

Reducing Disease Risks

Do not allow swimmers or pets to drink pool water.

Require swim diapers for those not potty trained. Take children to the bathroom often.

Keep pets out of the pool.

Anyone who is sick or has open wounds should not be in the pool.

Keep pool water properly filtered and chemically treated, testing the disinfectant level and pH at least twice per day (more often if in heavy use).

Reducing Chemical Risks

Always wear protective equipment and follow manufacturers’ instructions when adding chemicals to the pool or filtration system.

Keep chemicals at the proper levels.

Store chemicals in a cool, dry place. Store away from fire hazards and safely away from children and pets.

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