Feature Article - April 2008
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Life Preservers

Meeting the Challenges of 21st Century Aquatic Risk

By Hayli Morrison


The Future

Changes in staffing, technology, terminology, sanitation and regulation are just a few of the considerations aquatic facility operators should keep in mind going into the future, according to Fruia. For instance, with growing concern about kidnappings and child predator cases, should cities provide fencing around public spray parks? Since spray parks are just as likely to cause disease or injury as a swimming pool might be, should a crowd supervisor with first-aid training be on-site at all times? Any operator who has never considered these issues should keep in mind not only patron safety, but facility liability as well.

"The most important thing that we can't omit is that not all the responsibility can just be laid on the parent," Fruia said. "There is much more responsibility that needs to go into the planning of the facility, not only for the safety of the children, but for the safety and liability of the facility owners themselves."

The aquatics industry is certainly undergoing a revolutionary transformation. The experience may be met with some resistance, confusion and second-guessing, but one thing is certain. The current of change will keep the industry on a trajectory to newer, better heights.


Resources

To learn more about keeping your aquatic facility safe,
check out the following associations and organizations:

American Red Cross
www.redcross.org/services/hss/aquatics/

American Society of Pool and Spa Professionals (APSP)
www.apsp.org

National Swimming Pool Foundation (NSPF)
www.nspf.org

Safe Kids USA
www.usa.safekids.org

U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
www.cdc.gov/healthyswimming