Swimming pools are at the heart of communities, offering a safe, affordable, and fun environment for people to exercise, spend time with friends and family, and learn life skills. As a swimming pool owner or operator, you have a duty of care to those who use the facility ensuring safe clean water.

This Swimming Pool Code of Practice contains general operational and safety recommendations for the management of public swimming pool water treatment systems and associated water treatment plant. The CoP sets out how the technical operation of the pool should function for safe, healthy, swimming pool water.

The main risk in swimming pools is ill health

  • Water quality
  • Chemical risks
  • Physical risks (e.g. drowning, slips and trips, entrapment)
  • Infection (e.g. Cryptosporidium, various bacteria and viruses causing  gastroenteritis and Pseudomonas aeruginosa)

Potential risk to the individual

  • Personal illness or death
  • Long-term effects of illness
  • Loss of employment, income, or educational opportunities
  • Impoverished experience
  • Increased costs
  • Passing disease on to relations and friends and other swimmers

Potential risk to your organisation

  • Damage to reputation
  • Loss of income if visitors don’t come because they perceive that the risk of harm is too great
  • Civil claims arising from visitor illness, leading to financial loss
  • Prosecution and penalties for breaches of criminal law
  • Impact on the morale and esteem of employee

Monitoring, analysis, and improvement

As a minimum, pool management should monitor the safe and effective performance of their pool operation through the following:

  • Plant and treatment systems logs
  • Pool water testing
  • Bacteriological

Code of Practice

The Pool Water Treatment Advisory Group code of practice focuses on good practice, based principally on published guidance from PWTAG, to the industry that has been developed over many years. It also includes material from the Health and Safety Executive, Public Health England, Public Health Wales, Health Protection Scotland, the World Health Organisation and BS EN standards.

Helpful Links