Michigan’s Macomb County and Oakland County announced on June 1 that they plan to reopen public pools, rescinding the May 28 order, reported below, by health officials to close all public pools indefinitely.
This announcement follows Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s decision to move the state into Phase 4 of their reopening plan on June 8. In Macomb County, the reopen order is effective immediately, while Oakland county is waiting to officially rescind their closing order on June 8, the date that the new statewide policy goes into place.
Wayne County pools, where the city of Detroit is located, have not yet changed their order.
Pools that plan to reopen in Macomb County must first undergo health inspections by the Macomb County Health Department, Environmental Health Division.
Original Report is Below
In metro Detroit, those seeking relief from the summer heat by swimming are soon to be disappointed.
In Southeast Michigan, public health agencies ordered the closure of public swimming pools indefinitely. The Michigan Public Health Code intends to keep residents safe from the potential transmission of COVID-19 by eliminating the ability for large groups of people to congregate at public swimming pools. Those operating the pools are still required to maintain their pools in compliance with the Michigan Administrative Rule.
A statement by the City of Detroit Health Department and the Wayne County, Oakland, and Macomb County Health Departments reads, “With temperatures rising, swimming pools have potential to attract large groups. As regional leaders, we are committed to doing the right thing, and closing pools is the right thing to do to protect the health and safety of residents and prevent the spread of the virus.”
One of the goals for these pool closures is to reduce the spread of COVID-19 to the point where it would be safe again for Michigan schools to open in the fall. When these pools ultimately reopen, they must undergo inspection by their local Public Health Authority. While the country continues to battle this pandemic, public health agencies continue to encourage residents to take precautions such as wearing masks, washing hands, and staying home when feeling sick.
While beaches in Michigan reopened for the Memorial Day holiday, pools and splashpads remained closed. At least 3 city pools in nearby Ann Arbor will remain closed this summer as well.
Southeast Michigan has been one of the country’s hardest-hit areas in the coronavirus pandemic, with Wayne County alone seeing 20,415 confirmed coronavirus cases and 2,461 deaths. That ranks the county as having the 4th-most cases and 5th-most deaths of any county in the country.
Wayne County has, however, seen a dramatic decline in cases in recent weeks. Over the last week, Wayne County has seen fewer-than-6 new daily cases of coronavirus infection per 100,000 citizens. That’s a rate far lower than similarly-sized areas like Philadelphia (which is seeing around 12 new cases per 100,000) and New York County* (around 9 new cases per 100,000).
*While New York City is much larger than Detroit, New York County, which is coterminus with Manhattan, is of a similar size.
The area is also home to a number of large swimming clubs that have produced a large number of national and international swimmers. For example, current U.S. National Teamers Annie Lazor, Gabby DeLoof, Devon Nowicki, and Allison Schmitt all grew up in either Oakland or Wayne Counties.
Updated map of closures, openings, and reopenings, is below. This map is almost assuredly incomplete. If you have more verified listings, please leave them in the comments.