Optimizing safety in the pool and playground can be challenging for property and pool management. The two sites are very different, so ensuring safety in both areas will probably require industry experts.
A pool manager is familiar with taking care of site-specific tasks, such as pool compliance, lifeguard staffing and drowning hazards. However, the unique hazards of playgrounds may be unfamiliar. Therefore, pool managers who are also in charge of facility-operated playgrounds should familiarize with basic safety protocols.
Recognize the hazards
One of the more obvious risks is having a playground near a pool. Children may run from the pool to the playground without drying off properly. Playgrounds can be especially dangerous when wet, so there should be signage that reminds swimmers to towel off before entering the playground. These signs should convey the message both in writing and in graphics to ensure that readers of all ages will understand.
Further heightening safety means assessing and possibly reconfiguring certain aspects of the playground itself. If you’re unsure of where to begin, here are three tips to get you started.
1. Work with consultants: Whether you’re installing a new playground, are expanding or renovating, working with a Certified Playground Safety Inspector will ensure that you’re following playground regulations and optimizing safety. John Damyanovich, the owner of Playground Police and a CPSI, pointed out that working with these professionals means that you’ll have the proper surfacing for the equipment on your playground.
2. Train staff members: Frequent safety assessments will be necessary. If you don’t want to outsource the work to CPSIs regularly, you can see if any of the pool staff members would like to undergo playground safety training. This way, if any of the equipment is compromised, employees can spot the trouble right away and make sure that the problems are resolved as soon as possible.
3. Know what to look out for: Regardless of whether or not you have a CPSI in-house, you can perform a safety assessment on your own regularly, Recreation Management magazine noted. Keep an eye out for common playground problems, such as worn or damaged parts, insect damage, loose anchoring and more.
If you have many responsibilities and can’t perform playground safety assessments, you can outsource the work to a pool company that also houses playground services. Experts will be familiar with the unique challenges of managing a pool and a playground and will ensure overall safety.