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Officials urge residents to practice safety at pools

The Newburyport Current - 6/29/2018

The West Newbury Public Health Department recently reminded residents to practice safety and adhere to state regulations in regards to swimming pools.

"Spending time at the pool with friends and family is a great summer activity, but it's important to remember to practice safety," said Paul Sevigny, West Newbury public health agent. "Whether you own a pool, use a friend's pool or public pool, make sure you are following all safety regulations to avoid accident and injury."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 1 in 5 people who die from drowning are children 14 and younger and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death in children ages 1-4.

West Newbury Public Health recommended residents to follow safety tips from the American Red Cross:

Per Massachusetts regulation, have at least a 4-foot-high barrier that encloses the pool with an access gate that self-closes, locks and opens outward from the swimming area, with or without children present.

Fasten a safety cover over the pool when it is not in use and remove ladders for further prevention of access into the pool. Pool alarms are required whenever a house door leads directly to a pool deck.

Never leave children unattended while they are near or in a pool. An adult should accompany children in the water. Young or inexperienced swimmers should always wear a life jacket or inflatable arm floats.

Make sure children stay away from pool drains, pipes and any other openings to avoid getting trapped or hurt.

Set safety instructions and share them with family, friends, neighbors and anyone else who is near or uses the pool. Advise children to stay away from pool deep ends and to never run.

Maintain proper chemical levels, circulation and filtration of the pool. Regularly test and adjust the chemical levels to minimize the risk of earaches, rashes and more serious diseases. Never use the pool if the chemical levels are not correct or if the water is cloudy and you can't see the bottom.

Take a CPR course for adults and children to be prepared if an emergency situation occurs; update skills regularly.

Do not swim if thunderstorms are in the forecast.

Those who are 21 and older should drink responsibly if they consume alcoholic beverages when relaxing by the pool. Overindulging may increase the risk for injuries or accidental drowning.

Avoid using glass containers as they may break and leave debris around the pool or in the water.

For more information, call 978-363-1109 or visit https://www.wnewbury.org/board-health.


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