Staying Safe in Community Pools

Many families visit indoor and outdoor public pools and spas during the summer swimming season and year-round. Public pool and spa owners and operators should follow local, state and federal regulations to ensure the safety of their facilities.

Community PoolBy checking to see if a public pool or spa is using appropriate water safety practices, you can further assure the safety of you, your family and your community. These are helpful questions to ask when you and your family visit a public pool or spa:

Having the Appropriate Equipment

  • Are there fences that limit access to the pool and spa?
  • Has the pool or spa been inspected to ensure it is compliant with federal and local laws and regulations?
  • Are the new safety drain covers being used in compliance with the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act?
  • Do pool and spa pumps appear to be running?
  • Is there life-saving equipment such as life rings and reaching poles available for use?

Staying Close, Being Alert and Watching Children in and Around the Pool

  • Is there a lifeguard at the pool or spa to watch children and adults?
  • Are you watching your own child or children when they’re in or around the water?
  • Are there water safety rules posted in a visible area for adults and children to review?
  • Is there sufficient staff to monitor the pool or spa when it’s in heavy use?
  • Is there a charged phone close by at all times?

Learning and Practicing Water Safety Skills

  • Do you and your children know how to swim?
  • Is the staff trained and certified in first aid and emergency response?
  • Do you know how to perform CPR on children and adults? Are those skills updated regularly?
  • Do you understand the basics of life-saving, so you can assist in a pool emergency?

Who is Virginia Graeme Baker?

Seven-year-old Virginia Graeme Baker’s tragic death inspired her family to advocate for pool and spa safety and moved Congress to act to prevent entrapments. 
Read more about her story
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The Pool and Spa Safety Act: Staff interpretation and updates

 

Find the most up to date requirements for the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act.