Every year, thousands of people are taken to the emergency room after accidents involving swimming pools or spas. The majority of the injured are under 19 years of age.
When buying or selling a home, consider having the pool and its systems inspected. An inspector will look at the condition of the pool, functionality and safety of various components and will provide you with a written report outlining significant findings.
The inspection will include an assessment of the pool construction, the walking surface, access doors and fences and recirculation equipment. The inspector will describe the pool and all of its components, including the electrical and plumbing system, the pump and filter, and the heater if present. The condition of each component will be assessed.
To protect yourself and your family when using a pool or spa, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recommends taking the following precautions:
- Make sure the pool meets local ordinances, codes and safety requirements.
- Use nonslip materials on the deck, diving board and ladders.
- Ladders should be installed at both ends of the pool. Ladder handrails should be small enough for a child to grasp and steps should be at least three inches wide.
- All electrical equipment should be installed by a licensed electrician in accordance with current safety codes.
- Make sure the fence around the pool is at least 6 feet high with a locked gate. It should be constructed so that children cannot gain access using either the fencing material, lawn furniture or nearby shrubs.
- Mark pool depths clearly with floats.