Summer time means more pool time. It also is a time to review pool safety measures.
Here are some guidelines from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission on what you need to look for in your backyard pool, or any hotel, resort, cruise ship or community pool to make sure you and your kids stay safe in the water.
1. Fences. To prevent small children from getting unsupervised access to a pool, it should be completely surrounded by self-closing, self-latching gates. If you’re at a party at a friend’s home and the home itself forms a barrier to the pool, there should be alarms that make an audible sound when the backdoor opens.
2. Emergency Equipment. Pools should always have emergency rescue equipment nearby. Equipment can include a life ring, first aid kit, automated external defibrillator and oxygen. There should also be phone and emergency numbers posted poolside.
3. Drain Covers. Uncovered drains can be hazardous, and pose a risk of entanglement or entrapment, the commission warns. Pools with a safety vacuum release system, which automatically shuts off a pump when a blockage is detected, can make a pool even safer.
4. Pool Covers. To prevent children and pets from falling into the pool when unsupervised, pools should be covered when they’re not in use. Toys should also be removed from the pool since small children may try to reach them while unattended.