Swimming pools can be a great addition for homeowners of condominium associations. But pool regulations can be challenging to keep up with. It can be easy to let things slide until an health official shows up. Then your faced with hurrying to make sure the swimming pool is up to standards.
Easy Pool Regulations to Keep Up With
Three regulations are the most common failures regarding public pools. These include the following:
- Poor maintenance or inadequate equipment
- Lack of personnel
- Failure to meet the standards for water quality
If a health services agent discovers any of these issues, they can immediately shut the pool down until the problem is rectified. While a New Jersey property management company will know these regulations, many associations may not.
Proper Maintenance of Equipment
The swimming pool area must be fenced in with an enclosure. Ladders must be provided for pools more than two feet in depth. All of these pieces of equipment must be in proper working condition with no damaged areas that could pose a risk to someone.
The pool itself must be maintained with no areas of peeling paint or obvious damage. Water slides must be kept in optimal condition with no broken areas where injury can occur.
For most public swimming areas, the pool regulations state that the pool must be managed by a lifeguard any time it is open. Some pools may be the exception, such as retirement communities. However, it is important that you check with the proper agency to find out what requirements you are under for your pool.
The water must be tested at least weekly to ensure it maintains the correct chemical levels for safety. If the level is too weak, you will end up with bacteria and other health hazards. If the level is too strong, it can make it uncomfortable for swimming and damage the equipment.
Because everything that comes in contact with a pool affects the chemical balance, a pool owner will spend a great deal of time adjusting the levels. This is one reason many associations hire a New Jersey property management company to handle their business. They can employ a full-time employee to monitor the pool so that it will always pass inspection.
Be Aware of Liability Issues
Not only do homeowners and condominium associations have to worry about obeying the pool regulations that are established, they also have to be concerned with liability issues. Lawsuits are common with busy pools and the amount of work involved in pool management is often more than the association wants to deal with.
Even if your pool meets its regulations, you can still have liability for what goes on in your pool area. Anytime a patron is injured while in that area, you will have to prove that you were not responsible. Most associations do not have that kind of staff to deal with multiple issues.
You also have to make sure lifeguards are kept up on their certification. Since this is usually a seasonal job, you will often have to hire a new staff each year. The same holds true for pool maintenance staff that are often hired for the season. You will have to know that they are kept updated on any new regulations.
Managing your own pool can be a difficult, stressful job. While it’s not impossible to do yourself, it can often be easier to hire the task out to a company that knows the pool regulations. This allows you to concentrate on managing other aspects of your association.
Paul Santoriello is the President of Taylor Management Company located in Whippany New Jersey specializing in property management including pool regulations.