For many families, summer just wouldn’t be the same without lazy days at the pool. Warm sun, cool water, happy shrieks of children playing, inflatables bobbing on the surface…what’s not to like? However, as much fun as pools are they present a host of hazards including (but by no means limited to) slips and falls. Here are some tips to prevent pool slips and falls whether you’re enjoying your pool or the community pool.
Be on the Lookout for Obstacles. There are plenty of items that can clutter up walkways and pool-side areas. Whether you own the pool or are simply “visiting”, be on the lookout for such obstacles as:
- Inflatable Toys
- Books or Magazines
- Beach Bags
- Food or Beverages
If you spot these items lying about where they could be tripped on, relocate them (or ask the object’s owner to do so).
Another obstacle to be on the lookout for is pooled water. If you see standing water (even if it isn’t very deep), mop it up or let a pool staff member know.
Kids’ roughhousing is a pretty common summer activity. Chasing each other around, snapping towels at each other, and pushing one another in the pool are all activities you will likely see at the pool this season. While you may feel like the “party pooper”, it is advisable to discourage these activities. Horseplay can quickly turn in to an injury.
Provide Ample Warning
If you own the pool or are in a position of power (ex. pool manager), warn people about the possibility of slips and falls at the pool. For instance, put up signs that advise swimmers that the pool-side may be slippery.
Implement Safety Devices
Again, if you’re the owner of the pool or an employee, take steps to actively prevent slips and falls. For example, place handrails in areas that are notoriously slippery. In addition, you can consider pool-side surface coverings that traditionally provide more traction or are known to be non-slip. Another safety device to implement is a pool management plan. If you have employees at the pool, put a plan in place to ensure walkways and the pool-side are kept clear and clean.
Unfortunately, all the preventive measures in the world won’t stop a slip or fall from occurring now and again. With this in mind, it is important to have a plan. What happens if someone slips or falls? Is there a first aid kit on hand? Does someone know CPR? Write out a plan, even if it’s just a small family pool, to help ensure everyone’s safety.
Lastly, if you are the victim of a slip and fall at a pool, do not hesitate to seek medical treatment and be sure to document the incident. While it may be tempting to simply shake off a slip or fall and return to having fun, what seems like a minor injury at the time may actually turn out to be something more major or chronic.
Enjoy your summer!