Provide an adequate means of supervision or control
The level of supervision and the ability to control access depends very much on the
location, design and the way the pool is used. However, it is important to ensure
that adequate supervision and access control can be achieved in all cases.
A large pool with unrestricted access must be supervised at all times by competent
persons. On the other hand, a small, infrequently used pool may need only to be
regularly monitored providing that well displayed ‘house rules’ are in force and
effective safety management procedures are being followed.
A competent person should know and understand relevant pool operating procedures;
and Understand the safety aspects of their duties and be able to deal with emergency
Children must never be allowed to use the pool without the supervision of a responsible
adult. Stipulating the age of a child can be difficult, although the Sports Council
suggest that a child is a person under the age of 15 years. Non-swimmers over the
age of 15 should also be properly supervised.
Whilst the pool is in operation a responsible person should be on the premises and
know the procedure for dealing with certain situations. It is also advisable for
that person to be trained in first aid and in particular to be able to carry out
expired air resuscitation (EAR) and external cardiac compression (ECC).
Separate unsupervised pools are of particular concern and as such ‘house rules’ need
to be formulated either to prohibit lone swimming or to report to a responsible person
before entering the pool area. Arrangements can then be made to ensure that appropriate
safety measures are operated.
If the pool is an infrequently used, unsupervised indoor pool, then a safe system
of work needs to be devised. This could include ensuring the door to the pool area
remains locked and the key left at the reception. Any person wishing to use the
pool would then sign a log book and take control of the key.