CDC Releases New Guidelines for Pools to Follow as they Re-open

The CDC has issued an updated set of guidelines for pools and other aquatic facilities to re-open in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic. Although the agency does not explicitly state when facilities can begin to re-open, several states have already begun to re-open their facilities and some teams have started practices again.

  • Many of the new guidelines continue to follow previously announced social distancing measures including:
  • Encouraging people to frequently wash their hands using soap and warm water.
  • Wearing face coverings when unable to remain 6 feet apart. (Though not when in the water)
  • Cleaning and disinfecting all frequently touched surfaces including ladders, slides, and railings.
  • Posting signs around the facility to educate people about the impact of the virus.

Some newer, pool specific guidelines were also added to the list. These include guidelines for cleaning deck furniture, ensuring proper ventilation systems are in place, and changing pool deck layouts to maintain social distancing. Some guidelines also pertain to the staffing of aquatics facilities, and procedures to follow when actually in the water.

These pool specific guidelines include:

  • Cleaning all deck furniture and equipment daily, including chairs, tables, kickboards, and pull buoys.
  • Ensuring all cleaning products are EPA friendly by checking with supply companies.
  • Washing all borrowed towels and shared equipment directly after use.
  • Making sure all indoor pools have a working ventilation system, and opening doors and windows when possible.
  • Moving all chairs and tables 6 feet apart, unless being utilized by people from the same household.
  • Moving lifeguard and staff areas into socially distant areas so as to not put them at risk of contracting the virus.
  • Staggering shift start times for staff to limit the amount of staff in the facility at one time.
  • Training all staff on how to recognize the symptoms of COVID-19 and what to do if they come in contact with someone with the virus.
  • Designating staff to ensure all social distancing measures are being practiced by patrons, separate from the lifeguards on duty.
  • Reducing pools’ capacity to comply with local regulations.
  • Keeping patrons 6 feet apart in the pool whenever possible.
  • Staggering the startimes of activities such as swim lessons and swim teams to limit the amount of people in the facility at one time.
  • Minimizing the use of shared equipment such as kick boards, noodles, and goggles.

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2 years ago

Are these the latest guidelines for pools. These are a year old.

Audrey Dalton
3 years ago

The above post does not contain the information posted on the CDC website, “There is no evidence that COVID-19 can spread to people through the water used in pools, hot tubs, or water playgrounds. Proper operation and disinfection of pools, hot tubs, and water playgrounds should kill the virus that causes COVID-19. Limit close contact with people outside your home in public spaces, both in and out of the water. Get more information about COVID-19 and water.”

WM Fixer
3 years ago

NICOLE, can you give us the link to this guidelines?

Charlotte Boswell
3 years ago

So when do you suggest is the time that a facility can begin swim lessons?

Craig Sears
3 years ago

Is this the guidance they released 5/9, or is something updated since then?

3 years ago

Nevermind. Asked a question, re-read, found my answer

3 years ago

This is very encouraging news to see the CDC recognizing pools and a plan on how to re open.

3 years ago

Any resources on which states have facilities open? Anyone know about NJ guidance?

Reply to  JohnF
3 years ago

Yes, we’ve been covering it regularly. You can see the latest here:

New Jersey has not issued any guidance.

Wuhan Jimmy
Reply to  Braden Keith
3 years ago
Reply to  Braden Keith
3 years ago

How does these gudelines apply to private ( non-public) pools like in apartment and condo complexes where there is no “paid staff” ??

About Nicole Miller

Nicole Miller

Nicole has been with SwimSwam since April 2020, as both a reporter and social media contributor. Prior to joining the SwimSwam platform, Nicole also managed a successful Instagram platform, amassing over 20,000 followers. Currently, Nicole is pursuing her B.S. in Biomedical Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. After competing for the swim …

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