Pool Safety: 7 Essential Tips
No matter how much experience you have owning and operating your pool, it’s still important to receive a refresher course on essential pool-safety procedures. With summer right around the corner, now’s a great time to revisit pool safety to ensure a fun-filled summer free of accidents and injuries.
Your pool-safety refresher course should cover proper procedures for storing and handling chemicals, posting signage and making sure areas around the pool are safe for family and guests.
Here are seven pool-safety tips.
1. Organize chemical storage
The start of the pool season is a great time to fine-tune your pool chemical storage procedures. You might be light on inventory and ready to make your first trip to your local dealer. But before doing so, look at your storage area and consider making a few changes. Jerry Pierrottie, environmental health and safety (EHS) manager with Arch Chemicals, Inc., now part of Lonza, suggests creating a divider to separate sanitizers, shocks and other maintenance products to avoid chemical reactions.
“Put a divider in between [chemical containers] or make cubby holes,” Pierrottie says. “If you don’t have a
divider, keep containers four feet apart or put liquids in secondary containment to control possible spills.”
2. Don’t mix or pre-dissolve chemicals
Pool chemicals are designed to work alone, and Pierrottie cautions against mixing different chemicals together.
“Some products are very reactive, and some are less reactive,” he says. “Mixing chemicals can result in a little generation of heat, gasses and chlorine odor or [can escalate to] excessive heat and explosions.”
Jane Merritt, owner of Anchor Pools in Easley, S.C., adds that pool owners should never pre-dissolve chemicals in a bucket before treating a pool, especially for shock treatments. Instead, apply the products directly to the pool water to avoid potential chemical burns or a chemical reaction.
3. Safely clean up chemical spills
Chemical spills are a part of owning and maintaining a pool, but it’s how you deal with the spills that’s most important. Pierrottie suggests incorporating safe clean-up practices to make sure spills don’t escalate from a minor incident to a hazardous situation.
“Clean up one chemical at a time to avoid causing any reactions,” he says. “Liquids should be mopped up or absorbed, and solids should be swept up