The Lake County General Health District (LCGHD) licenses and inspects over 100 pools and spas. All public pools are inspected twice a year and include those associated with municipalities, hotels, campgrounds, and other recreational areas. Inspections focus on health and safety including disinfectant levels, pH, total alkalinity, calcium hardness, cyanuric acid, temperature, and total dissolved solids. Facilities are also inspected for compliance in regards to chemical storage, pump and filter rooms, weekly operation logs, and safety equipment.
Facilities included under the LCGHD Swimming Pool Program include:
- Public Swimming Pool
- Public Spa
- Special Use Pool
- Wading Pool
- Spray Ground or Splash Pad
Recreational Water Illnesses
Germs spread by swallowing, breathing in mists or aerosols of, or having contact with contaminated water in swimming pools, hot tubs, water parks, water play areas, interactive fountains, lakes, rivers, or oceans can cause recreational water illnesses (RWIs). RWI infections can include gastrointestinal, skin, ear, respiratory, eye, neurologic, and wound infections. Diarrhea is the most commonly reported RWI. Diarrheal illnesses can be caused by parasites, bacteria, or viruses. Crypto (short for Cryptosporidium), Giardia, Shigella, norovirus and E. coli are examples of RWIs that cause diarrhea.
Safety Precautions to Prevent RWIs
All swimmers should shower with soap before swimming and make sure hands are washed after using the bathroom or changing diapers. It is also important to avoid swallowing the pool water. If you are the parent of young children, take kids on frequent bathroom breaks and check diapers often. If a diaper needs to be changed, do so in the restroom, not poolside.
The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) provides forms to be used by operators and local health departments. The Pool Equipment Notification Report form, Pool & Spa Inspection form, Pool Equipment Inventory form, and Weekly Operation and Incident Report form can all be found at the following link: ODH Public Swimming Pools- Forms The ODH Injury Reporting form can be found by visiting the following link. Public pool and spa operators are responsible for completing the report within 72 hours of an injury requiring medical attention beyond first aid. Form for Reporting Ohio Pool & Spa Injuries For more information, visit ODH Public Swimming Pools.
Swimming Pool and Spa Inspections
The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act
The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act (P&SS Act) was designed to prevent the tragic and hidden hazard of drain entrapments and eviscerations in pools and spas. The law became effective on December 19, 2008. The U.S. Consumer Product and Safety Commission (CPSC) provides a list of American Society of Medical Engineers (ASME)/ American National Standards Institute (ANSI) approved drain covers and ASME/ANSI/ American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) approved safety vacuum release systems that comply with the P&SS Act. CPSC-Approved Drain Covers and Vacuum Release Systems