Every year thousands of American Families face the unimaginable- swimming pool drowning or near drowning fatalities. The majority of deaths and injuries in pools and spas involve young children between the ages of one and three and take place in residential pools and spas.
These tragedies are avoidable and while barriers, help to make poos and spas safer, cannot replace adult supervision of young children around pools and spas.
IVY STUDIO, LLC is a landscape design firm based in Massachusetts that focusses on expanding luxury outdoor living often with inclusion of pool and spa. Among our many services, we offer a guideline to effective pool safety in concert with local regulation codes in effect as well as offering additional safety mechanisms based on your personal Family conditions and situations.
In concert with vigilant adult supervision, the best way to reduce child drownings in residential pools is for pool owners to erect and maintain effective barriers that will help in the prevention of young children gaining access to the pool and spa. We will now discuss some of the barriers available with the caveat that you need to check with your local building codes to ensure they are being followed correctly as they do differ from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.
Before we review the different barrier types available, we need to reiterate the golden rule, which is never leave a child unattended around a pool, spa, hot tub, bath or any body of water.
For all pool and spa homeowners in concert with local regulations:
• Install non climbable fence around pool perimeter with conforming self -latching, self-closing and opening out gates.
• Alarm all doors leading to pool and spa area.
• Maintain pool and spa covers in good working condition
• Have life saving equipment such as life rings, floats and a reaching pole available and accessible.
• Teach children basic safety water skills
• Ensure that the adult supervisor and children know how to swim.
• Have a telephone close by at all times, programmed to contact emergency personnel.
A successful pool barrier prevents a child from getting over, under or through and keeps the child from access to the pool in the absence of a supervising adult. Typically, the weak link in a closed- loop fence system around a pool and spa is the gate that fails to close and latch completely. For total pool and spa safety, the gate must close completely every time and to do so, it needs to be maintained in proper working order. When relying on door alarms in concert with safety fencing, ensure that the sound lasts for at least 30 seconds within 7 seconds of door opening. It should also be loud and have a distinct tone different from other sound sin house like door bell, smoke alarm etc.
Please contact us at 978 591 0300 or vern@ivystudioiMA.com for a no obligation aquatic consultation including pool safety recommendations for your next pool and spa project