Summer is here, and it’s time to beat the heat! For a lot of folks in St. Louis, that means hitting the swimming pool. Backyard pools are a lot of fun, but they also present serious safety and liability concerns. Whether you’re in our own St. Louis backyard, or looking to improve pool safety somewhere else, follow our eight pool safety tips before you dive into the summer months.
Keep Your Family Safe the Right Way – Pool Safety Tips
Never let a child in the pool alone. Pools should always be supervised by an adult. If you’re not available, consider hiring a “pool sitter” — someone you trust to watch the kids. Get the neighbors involved, too: ask them to keep an eye on the pool when you’re not around.
If you plan on swimming in the evening hours, keeping the area well-lit is a must. When selecting pool and outdoor lighting, make sure the pool and the area around it are both properly lighted. This includes any stairs or steps around the pool!
Pool fences aren’t just a good way to keep everyone safe; they’re actually required by state and local law in most situations. According to state guidelines and U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), pool fences should be:
- At least 4 ft. or taller
- Impossible for children to climb
- Gated w/self-closing, self-latching gates that open away from the pool
Living in St. Louis? Check out our complete homeowner’s guide to St. Louis pool fence rules and regulations: Swim Safe with these St. Louis Pool Fence Requirements.
Beyond being required by law, there’s a reason why community pools are plastered in signage: they help keep people safe. Follow their example by posting signs around your pool that lay out the “house rules.” Customize your pool signs based on your unique situation, but consider adding some basic messages such as no running, rules for supervision, and phone numbers for help (personal cell,911, etc.).
Personal Flotation Devices
Little ones — and anyone that doesn’t know how to swim (or at least not well) — should never be in or near a pool without proper safety equipment. Keep everyone out of harm’s way with personal flotation devices (PFDs) like life jackets and water wings.
With all that water splashing around, backyard pools are notorious for slips and spills. Minimize the potential for accidents by mixing a non-skid floor additive to your deck stains and paints. You can buy these at your local hardware store, or, if you’re the do-it-yourself type, simply mix some sand into your paint to create your own non-slip pool deck.
Rescue and First Aid Equipment
Hopefully, your attention to pool safety means you’ll never need it, but you should always be prepared for any emergency by having the right rescue and first aid equipment at hand. A few things you should always keep close to the pool:
- Pool rescue pole or hook
- Life preserver
- First aid kit
- CPR instructions
When it comes to pool safety, you can never be too prepared. Consider formal training like swimming lessons, pool safety courses, and CPR training – check out the classroom and online locations from the American Red Cross. Increasing your family’s familiarity and comfort in the water is a great way to improve pool safety — do it early and safely with close supervision.
Ask the Experts to Help Make Your Pool Safe
Maintenance-Free Outdoor Solutions is the most trusted fencing company in St. Louis. If you’re looking to install a pool fence or backyard lighting, let one of our fence specialists walk you through the options and give you a free, no-obligation estimate.