The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) closed 80 percent of the pools evaluated across different states in the country for violating health inspections, according to a recently published report.
Pool season is just around the corner and the hottest states are getting ready for it. But before going into your local public pool, the CDC is advising personal pool checkups.
A series of inspections were held in five different states across the country with the most public pools, hot tubs and children’s water playgrounds. The states inspected were Arizona, California, Florida, New York and Texas.
Investigators reviewed data from 84,187 routine inspections of 48,632 public water facilities, discovering that the vast majority violated healthy standards.
Public pool inspections
The CDC issued a report on Thursday in which assured 80 percent of the investigated pools had been poorly maintained and could endanger the health of public users.
— ABC News (@ABC) May 19, 2016
“No one should get sick or hurt when visiting a public pool, hot tub or water playground. That’s why public health and aquatics professionals work together to improve the operation and maintenance of these public places so people will be healthy and safe,” said Beth Bell, MD, M.P.H and director of CDC’s National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Diseases.
After the public inspections were made, researchers found that around 80 percent of the investigated public aquatic venues had at least one violation. In fact, one out of eight inspections resulted in the immediate closure of the pool for violating serious health standards.
One out of five kiddie pools had to be closed given the healthy standards. The most common violations included improper pH levels in the facility (above 15 percent), lack of safety equipment (13 percent), and disinfectant concentration in 12 percent of the cases.
It is easy to find bits of fecal matter and other parasites in public pools that include Cryptosporidium, which can cause irritation on the eyes and in the respiratory tract.
In 2015, the CDC issued a report that alerted users from water-borne diseases, common around pool season, due to chlorine-resistant fecal parasites and poor cleansing of the pool.
In 2013, the CDC created the Network for Aquatic Facility Inspection and Surveillance to measure tabs of safety public pool across the country and advised users to take matters into their own hands when it comes to water safety.
Advice for pool users
The CDC is advising public pool users to remain safe on this swimming season by checking into inspection results before using a public water facility.
Users can also complete their own inspection of the public pool before diving in using a test strip, found in pool-supply stores, to measure pH levels and free chlorine and bromine concentration on the facility.
According to the CDC report, free chlorine concentration levels should be of 1 ppm in pools and 3 ppm in hot tubs. Bromine concentration levels should be at least 3 ppm in pools and 4ppm in hot tubs.
Common pH levels should be around 7.2 to 7.8 in pools and water installations. CDC advises to observe the drain of the pools and check for clear water.
Confirmation of a lifeguard on duty with safety equipment such as rescuing rope or pole is also important for safety and prevention methods.