5 Must Have Pool Safety Equipment For Parents
Author: Alexandra Johnson
Owning a pool comes with many joys. There is the exercise available literally out the back door, the entertainment options for family and friends and the beauty of a water feature. You can look online to find ways to use your pool to stay fit. But, owning a pool also means responsibility, especially for parents who want to ensure the children in their home are protected from pool mishaps. And of course, anyone who owns a pool needs to make sure that they also are insured just in case any problems do occur — from leaks to injuries. And of course, anyone who owns a pool needs to make sure that they also are insured just in case any problems do occur — from leaks to injuries. Luckily, auto insurance carriers often also provide pool insurance as well and have a variety of plans to accommodate most privately-owned pools. You can even find a company that offers both car and home insurance, and bundle your services to save on your car insurance. On average each year, some 350 children under the age of 5 drown in swimming pools. More than 2,600 children under the age of 5 are treated in emergency rooms each year for near-drowning incidents in swimming pools. And most of these incidents occur in residential pools. The key to pool safety and peace of mind lies in the equipment. There are five must-have equipment requirements which will go a long way toward providing that peace of mind.
Parents and families should make sure that no one can be trapped in or near a drain. To that end, pool owners should install anti-entrapment or safety drain covers in their pools. This simple step can protect against tragic accidents. Public pools are already required to meet this requirement, it makes sense that private, family pools should follow the same guidelines.
A privacy fence that helps cut down on the lure of the pool from outside the yard is a must. It provides privacy and ensures that neighborhood children don’t wander into the area unsupervised.
In addition to a fence, self-closing and self-latching gates are an important requirement for private, backyard pools. These gates come in a variety of different types. Some provide a magnetic latch, others electronic sensors and adult bypass switches.
One of the most effective ways to guard against accidents in a pool is to simply use a locking pool cover. This also helps preserve the heat in a pool as well, so it can serve double-duty. The pool covers are usually made of some type of vinyl mesh and designed to hold a significant amount of weight. Because they are locking, it prevents the use of the pool without the owner’s consent.
Every pool should be equipped with an alarm system. This includes an alarm for the gate, a sensor system for the fence itself and most importantly, water subsurface and water intrusion systems designed to alert owners when the water in a pool has been disturbed. Gate alarms sometimes come with a gate, but can also be bought separately, It is important when buying a gate or fence sensor alarm to purchase one that also will alert when the battery is losing power. Otherwise, it is all too easy to forget to change the batteries and the alarm is then completely useless. Water-intrusion alarms are especially important because they represent the last line of defense against a mishap or tragedy. And the cost is not prohibitive, ranging from $150 to $350 for a quality system. There are several types of alarm systems on the market today. This includes wave sensor systems, which are designed to be triggered by actual waves or motion in the pool. The sensitivity of the alarm is usually adjustable. Another type of system is a subsurface disturbance sensor. This type of alarm triggers both with waves and with movement beneath the surface of the water. And finally, there are wrist bands, good for families with small children. The bands are designed for children to wear and will trigger an alarm if exposed to water. In addition to these five basic equipment requirements, it is important that adults who will be in and around the pool and supervising children on a regular basis undergo safety training. This entails CPR, first aid and emergency response. Local community pools often offer this training for a nominal fee. Instituting all of these safety measures can bring peace of mind for the owners of a family pool, as well as provide a multitude of other benefits. This includes everything from the privacy benefits that come with proper fencing to savings from heating and cleaning costs that come with a pool cover. And of course, putting these safety measures in place will also help save a pool owner money on the insurance costs of owning and maintaining a pool, an important factor as well.