by Rob Cox, March 07, 2011
Above Ground, Inflatable, and Kiddie Swimming Pool Safety
Portable pools - those with the inflatable top ring, as shown to the left, or smaller, inflatable pools, have caught the attention of legislators recently. Previously outside of regulations for pool safety, New York and Tennessee, for example, have drafted new laws to require fencing and/or pool alarms to be used when these pools are filled.
Portable pools are quick and easy to purchase and set up - so quick in fact, that little thought is given to their safety. Here's some tips to increase pool safety for portable pools.
- Check with your local Building & Zoning commission to inquire about laws related to portable or soft-sided pools.
- The ladder shown in this picture is extremely unsafe. Use pool ladders that have a locking stair or flip-up type of ladder.
- Keep all chairs, tables or any item far away from the pool. Small children may use these to climb up and over the pool side.
- Cover your portable pool when not in use, or drain the pool for extended periods of non-use.
- Install a floating pool alarm, such as the Pool Patrol pool alarm, or use the Safety Turtle wristband type pool alarm.
- Lock doors leading out to the pool, for extra safety, add door alarms to all points of egress.
- Teach small children to never use the pool alone, and if you catch them near the pool alone - use some discipline.
Because of the low height of portable pools, the ease of access, and an attitude that it's a safer pool, nearly 10% of child drownings in the US during 2010 occured in "Easy-Set" style Intex pools. If you are considering one of these pool types, or if you already own one, make sure to follow the guidelines above, to prevent another tragedy from occuring in your own backyard.
Even if you don't have small children of your own, proper pool safety practices can keep children of friends and neighbors safe.
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