Is it safe to swim in your outdoor oasis?
April temperatures have not been very cooperative for those who decided to open their pools early this swim season.
But warmer weather is on the way and for those who have heaters in their pools, those days are closer than we think.
But many people are wondering, “Is it safe to go swimming during this pandemic?”
The answer is yes. But with a few caveats that we think are worth mentioning.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said there is no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread to humans through the use of pools, hot tubs, spas or water playgrounds. It also noted that proper disinfection and maintenance, such as with chlorine or bromine, should inactivate this coronavirus.
But the virus can live on surfaces, such as pool decks and chairs. So you need to take the same precautions around your pool as you’re probably taking when you bring in food from the grocery store. So before anyone gets in the pool, make sure you wipe down not just pool decks and chairs but also pool railings and coping around the pool.
It’s also a good idea to wipe down anything that’s going to go into the pool – floaties, rafts, etc. When the day is done, gather all those pool accessories and store them away – and repeat the same process of wiping them down before the next use.
If it’s just your immediate family that’s swimming, those simple precautions, along with washing swimsuits and towels after use should be all you need to get in the pool and enjoy it like you always have.
But backyard pools have always been a source of social fun and gatherings. In this day and age, you need to become more aware of who’s going into your pool, even if it’s just a kid from next door. That needs to be explained to your children – if they want to have a friend or two over they should tell you in advance so that you can check in with the parents – inquiring about how their household has been and whether or not they’re okay with their child coming over to your pool. It’s hard to have kids do social distancing – especially in a pool. We recommend you err on the side of caution.
The same applies to having extended family or other adults over for a gathering. It can happen. But for now, we’d recommend maintaining social distancing – both in and outside of the pool.
Chairs and tables can be set up so they’re six feet apart. When people get in the pool, everyone can still maintain that six foot distance.
Setting out a bowl of chips is not a smart move. Serve snacks and drinks on an individual basis.
All of this may seem like overkill. For now, it’s not.
Your outdoor oasis is waiting to be enjoyed. So in addition to all your traditional rules like no running around the pool, this pool season, add a bit of precaution as well.
Stay safe. And have fun!