Pool safety, Its your responsibility.
Unintentional Drowning: Get the facts. Every day, about ten people die from unintentional drowning. Of these, two are children aged 14 or younger. Drowning ranks fifth among the leading causes of unintentional injury death in the United States.
How big is the problem?
From 2005-2009, there were an average of 3,533 fatal unintentional drownings (non-boating related) annually in the United States — about ten deaths per day. An additional 347 people died each year from drowning in boating-related incidents.
About one in five people who die from drowning are children 14 and younger.
For every child who dies from drowning, another five receive emergency department care for nonfatal submersion injuries.
More than 50% of drowning victims treated in emergency departments (EDs) require hospitalization or transfer for further care (compared with a hospitalization rate of about 6% for all unintentional injuries). These nonfatal drowning injuries can cause severe brain damage that may result in long-term disabilities such as memory problems, learning disabilities, and permanent loss of basic functioning (e.g., permanent vegetative state).
The statistics above come directly from the CDC website. Florida has by far a majority of those deaths. Its your responsibility to ensure your pool is safe to swim in and be around.
Here are some safety tips on what to look out for around your home pool.
1. All electrical outlets in the pool area and yes that means the pool lanai, patio and exterior outlets at the pool equipment be GFCI protected. No matter how old your home is if it has a pool consider having a licensed electrician install GFCI devices in the entire pool area. It can save your life.
2. Install a child barrier fence around your pool and use it whenever children are present or going to be present. Children by far drown more than adults due to inattention. Its easy to lose track of a little one or even not so little and before you know it a tragedy has occurred. A fence will prevent that.
3. If you’re buying a home its not a bad idea to have a licensed electrician check to be sure the pools electrical system is properly grounded and wired. Electrocution deaths happen all the time and this is not a typical part of a home inspection. The wiring is typically in boxes and conduit and visible to an inspector.
4. Be sure the main drain cover on the bottom of your pool is a non vortex type cover. This style of cover will not allow a vacuum to be created that can suck a child or adult down to the bottom of the pool and drown them. They have been required here in Florida for some time but have not been required to be installed in older private pools.
5. Have a licensed electrician confirm the pool is bonded. This is not the same as grounded. Bonding is having all the metal and electrical parts of your pool tied together. The pool cage, pump, electrical, pool climb out ladders, rebar and so forth. This is a safety feature that when and if a short were to happen in theory the electrical charge will want to go back to source through the metal item touched and not you.
These are but a few of the things you can do to help keep yourself and your family and guests safe when using your pool.
If you are looking for an experienced home inspector and inspection company consider calling HomeSpec Certified Inspections, Inc. We service Sarasota, Charlotte, Desoto, Manatee and Lee counties in SW Florida. Todd Miller the owner is a Certified Master Inspector, Charles Miller is a Certified Professional Inspector. Both are Nachi certified. We send out two inspectors but only charge for one.
HomeSpec Certified Inspections, Inc.