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Pool Safety Checklist

  • At a party, don’t assume another adult is watching the kids in the pool—everyone thinks someone else is watching them. Take turns taking 15 minute shifts, and whoever’s on duty must keep their eyes on the pool. Try using a “kid watch hat”—whoever’s watching the pool wears a special hat. When their turn is up, the hat is passed to the next watcher.
  • Always watch children in the pool. Drowning is silent. Don’t leave, even for a minute.
  • Don’t let children stay in a hot spa too long.
  • Be careful of mixing alcoholic beverages and a hot spa.
  • Brush up on swim lessons for everyone who needs them, and keep current on CPR training.
  • Keep a phone by the pool.
  • Don’t put off installing safety equipment such as fences, alarms or pool covers.

Visiting a Public Pool?

On December 19, 2008 the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act law became effective, requiring all public pools and spas nationwide to have approved drain covers installed and a second anti-entrapment system installed, when there is a single main drain other than an unblockable drain. Children ages 5-9 are at greatest risk of drain entrapment; this law is intended to eliminate the hazard.


When using a public pool or spa this summer, ask if the pool or spa is compliant with the Virginia Graeme Baker Act, or if there are drain covers and an anti-entrapment system. Many pools may have had to recently install the equipment to become compliant.

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