Some of what a certified pool operator (CPO) knows that lifeguards, swim instructors and swimmers should know.

(Certified pool operators are taught about pool and spa management and maintenance, chemicals, filtration, and some of the same things lifeguards are taught about safety.)

Parents: stay within arm’s reach of children. Even when there are lifeguards there is no substitution for direct adult supervision. Be sure that children take regular bathroom breaks. Diapers should be changed regularly in a bathroom, not at poolside. Swim diapers do not prevent fecal material from entering the water and only contain the waste for a very brief time. Before swimming parents should wash a young child, especially his or her bottom completely with soap and water.

Weak or inexperienced swimmers should consider wearing U.S. Coast Guard approved lifejackets when swimming. Do not use air filled or foam toys or air filled arm bands in place of lifejackets for safety.

Pools should not be used when a cover is in place, even partially uncovered.

Starting blocks should only be used by experienced users such as a swim team, and only under direct supervision of a coach or instructor. When not in such use they should be covered or removed to prevent casual users from temptation.

Most pool codes require a safety line be in place to indicate the transition from shallow to deep. Many say it should be at five feet depth. Some codes specify that it be from 1 to 2 feet toward the shallow end from the pool transition. Some codes say this floating line must be in place at all times except when the pool has a lifeguard or coach on duty.

When you enter hot water in a spa your blood vessels get bigger, your heart rate goes up, and your temperature rises. Immersing in hot water at 104 degrees Fahrenheit for more than 15 minutes is dangerous.

Spa water should not be foamy.

UV rays can reflect off water and affect you even under the shade of an umbrella

Hotels and motels have more outbreaks of water related illness than other pools. In some case the chemicals needed to make the pool water safe were almost nonexistent. People who have had diarrhea should not swim for at least two weeks after the symptoms have passed.

On the subject of accidental fecal releases: Formed stools have less germs than diarrhea. Cryptospiridium can remain active at normal disinfection levels for several days. Therefore a higher concentration of chlorine is needed after the initial cleanup is required. Please consult the latest stats as this may not be up to date, but by way of an example: Higher chlorine concentration is needed for at least 30 minutes after a solid stool accidental fecal release and diarrhea requires eight hours.

poolchemicalsignatDeAnzaCollege 47 pxls: pool chemical sign in four colors representing various hazards pool chemical signs