Hot summer temperatures are just around the corner and for Southern California residents that means it's time to start swimming--just make sure the pool you and your children are swimming in isn't festering with germs and filth.
The Current State of Swimming Pool Hygiene
The fresh blue inviting water of a pool in the summer beacons would be swimmers with the promise of a refreshing dip and paddle around the pool.
Unfortunately, public swimming pools are all to often the host of germs and bacteria--often the result of all-too-common socially unacceptable behavior.
According to a recent survey conducted by Sachs Media Group on behalf of the Water Quality & Health Council;
More than half of Americans (51%) report using a swimming pool as a communal bathtub.
This habit has taken hold even though nearly two-thirds (64%) of Americans report they know that pool chemicals do not eliminate the need to shower before swimming.
40% of Americans admit they’ve peed in the pool as an adult.
24% of Americans would go in a swimming pool within one hour of having diarrhea,
48% report they never shower before swimming.
This presents several challenges, as chlorine's ability to combat other germs and bacteria, much like chemical disinfectants used in cleaning, is reduced when it comes into contact with dirt, oil, and other chemicals, such as those found in deodorant.
When dirt, sweat, personal care products, and other things on our bodies react with chlorine, there is less chlorine available to kill germs.
Rinsing off for just 1 minute removes most of the dirt, sweat, or anything else on your body.
What Lurks in Shallow Waters
Chlorine, while highly effective at killing the germs and bacteria commonly found in public and private swimming pools, demonstrably loses its effectiveness when combating foreign elements introduced through poor swimmer hygiene, leading to a host of undesirable contagious diseases and other matter swimming alongside you, including:
- E.coli (from the fecal matter).
- ; a parasite that can survive in heavily chlorinated waters for up to 10 days and causes cryptosporidiosis, a form of diarrhea.
- Giardia; a microscopic parasite that causes diarrhea, and;
- Recreational Water Illnesses (RWIs); infections caused by swallowing or coming into contact water contaminated with germs, the most common infection types being;
- Neurologic, and;
Swimming Pool Safety
Staying safe when swimming this summer is a simple matter, as long as you follow a few simple tips:
- If you have diarrhea, stay out.
- Shower first.
- Don't pee or poop in the water.
- Don't swallow the water.
- Take hourly restroom breaks, and;
- Parents; check kids diapers regularly.
References & Resources
- Keep Pools Clean at the Kickoff of Swimming Season
- Recreational Water Illnesses
- Swimming Hygiene
- 15 Facts About Pool Water That Are Slightly Horrifying
Swimming Pool Cleaning Tips
Most swimmers don't check the water quality before jumping in and trust in their host to ensure it is properly sanitized.
Not doing so can lead to an outbreak of illness and wreak havoc on your businesses reputation and profits.
To avoid that scenario:
- Test the water regularly and have it drained and sanitized before refilling and treating if the water tests at unsafe levels.
- Check to ensure appropriate levels of chlorine are present at regular intervals to avoid potentially hazardous swimming conditions.
- Keep your restroom tidy and well supplied to encourage desired restroom use, and;
- Regularly sanitize baby diaper changing stations to avoid cross-contamination issues common in children's wading pools.
Everyone enjoys a nice swim on a hot summers day, especially at a relaxing resort, hotel, or amusement park.
Maintaining the health and safety of the facilities is equivalent to keeping the public image of your organizations brand and public image--even minor lapses resulting in public health issues can be disastrous.
However, keeping the pool clean is only half the battle--you must ensure that the pool area is well-maintained and free of debris and that the restrooms present a desirable alternative to using the spa or pool.
Outsourcing your facilities pool, spa, recreational area, and restroom cleaning and disinfection requirements is a cost-effective method of ensuring public safety and maintaining your brand's stellar image.
If you would like more information regarding the benefits of outsourcing your spa, resort, hotel, or gym swimming facilities, or if you would like to schedule a free, no-obligation onsite walk through and assessment of your organization's cleaning and infection control requirements, contact us today for a free quote!
In Bakersfield CA, call (661) 437-3253
In Fresno CA, call (559) 206-1059
In Valencia CA, or Santa Clarita CA, call (661) 437-3253