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Y'all be safe and enjoy this summer at the pool

three kids lounging about and playing in a backyard pool

(StatePoint) Pools are fun. But remember, while you're enjoying yourselves, you need to be safe.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 275 children nationwide under the age of 5 drown in swimming pools annually, and more than 4,100 children receive medical treatment for pool-related accidents, the majority of which occur in backyard pools. Luckily, building codes and standards can help.

“Building codes are life savers and as the leading building codes and standards developer, we are accounting for every facet of the home, which includes specific provisions to make pools and spas safer,” says Dominic Sims, CEO of the International Code Council.

To drive the importance of water safety home and ensure individuals are having safe pool fun, the Code Council shares the following tips:

• Install fences and protective gates: To ensure the pool area is inaccessible to unauthorized swimmers and children when there is no supervisor, install a fence at least 4-feet high around pool and spa areas with a self-closing, self-latching gate or door.

• Keep safety devices nearby: Always keep basic lifesaving equipment handy (pole, rope and personal flotation devices) and know how to use them.

• Install alarms: Install alarms on all doors and windows to detect unauthorized access from the home into the pool area. You can also install a pool alarm to detect accidental or unauthorized entrance into the water.

• Remember safety covers: Install an approved safety cover on any pool. For the safety of all individuals, do not allow anyone to stand or play on it.

• Be code-compliant with drain covers and grates: To help identify compliance with current standards, all pool and hot tub drains must have a cover or grate marked with the appropriate product marking.

• Ensure existing pools and spas have safe suction outlets or other safety features that comply with industry standards.

• Secure the proper permits for a pool installation: contact your local building department to determine what permits are needed and what requirements you must follow.


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