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How to be a responsible swimming pool owner

You’re excited, the new house you bought has a pool. Congrats! I’m certain your pool will provide you with endless summertime memories, but with those memories comes responsibility.

inground poolThe first responsibly of a pool owner is having some type of cover or fence, or both. Growing up, my best friend had a pool. It was kind of a half-in, half-out of ground pool. His yard was fenced in, but there was only a soft solar cover on top of the pool. The fence kept people that were out of the yard safe, but kids that were in the yard needed as much supervision as if they were swimming. Preferable to the old soft covers are the newer stronger automatic covers, they are much safer and some can even tolerate hundreds of pounds on top of them.

If you do have an automatic cover, it does no good unless it is actually closed. Remember a cover that’s not used is pointless. For the safety of your own kids and the neighborhood kids, CLOSE THE COVER. We had a neighbor that had a pool and would leave his cover off for weeks at a time. Weeks. There was no fence around his yard, so there was no other protection from drowning. He had a toddler. We also had a toddler. On more than one occasion we went to his house and told him to close his pool cover. Don’t be that person. Don’t be a jerk. If you have a cover, use it.

Finally, we need to talk about keeping kids safe while swimming. Every summer on the news there are several reported toddler drowning stories. This summer has been no different. The most recent toddler drowning story I heard involved a pool party where no less than 10 adults were supervising the pool. When my wife and I are both out at the pool with our kids, we make sure ONE of us is assigned to watching the kids. We do this for two reasons…if just one of us is watching the kids the other is free to relax and actually enjoy the pool as a swimmer, not just a life guard. Also, when just one of us watches our children, we pay MUCH closer attention to what they are up to rather than just causally glancing, or worst yet assuming the other parent is watching.

Our first summer in a house with a pool has been a blast. Keep your kids and other kids in your neighborhood safe by fencing it in and covering it up. Keep kids in the pool safe by rotating which parent is in charge of kids in the pool. Stick to these simple rules and you’re sure to have a fun, safe summer.

And, if you are itching to find a home with a pool, make sure to give Indy Homes Team a shout to find the perfect place for your home and recreation.

Indianapolis blogger Pete GilbertAbout the Author
Pete Gilbert
Pete is a former teacher, turned stay-at-home dad of kids ages 3, 5, and 8. When not packing lunches and shuttling kids all over town he writes a blog titled, "A Dad Influence" for IndysChild.com.

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