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Monday, July 15, 2024

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Health Department Releases COVID-19 Pool Guidelines

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By Press Release

To access the Herald’s local coronavirus/COVID-19 coverage, click here.
TRENTON  – Health and safety standards for municipal pools and private swim clubs, set to reopen June 22, were issued by the New Jersey Department of Health.
According to a release, the guidelines include parameters for reduced capacity, social distancing in and out of the water, enhanced cleaning and disinfection procedures, and other measures to avoid the spread of COVID-19. Pools facilities are defined as conventional pools, hot tubs, spas, wading pools, special purpose pools, pools operated by or serving campgrounds, clubs, churches, cities, common interest communities, counties, as well as other types outlined in the guidelines.
Gov. Phil Murphy signed Executive Order 153, permitting these facilities to open, as of June 22. Facilities are required to develop a COVID-19 Pool Operation Prevention Plan that complies with the guidelines and the executive order.
“Pools provide a welcome respite from heat, as well as recreational opportunities,” stated Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli. “These standards will ensure that precautions are in place to protect the health of staff and pool-goers while enjoying the pool this summer.”
Under the guidelines, staff must be screened for fever and symptoms upon entering. Facilities are urged to stagger access to entry and exit points to avoid congregation and reduce capacity to 50% for the facility and grounds.
Social distancing of 6 feet is also required while in the water, as well as on the pool deck, with the exception of immediate family members, caretakers, household members, or romantic partners.
A sign-in sheet is to be maintained for all staff and patrons to facilitate potential contact tracing efforts.
Patrons can use their own water play equipment, such as goggles, snorkels, fins, kickboards, pool noodles and toys, but sharing is prohibited, and such equipment cannot be rented for patrons’ use.
Staff and pool-goers are encouraged to wear a cloth face-covering outside of the pool when social distancing of 6 feet cannot be maintained, with the exception of children under age 2 and lifeguards on active duty.
Sharing furniture and equipment, such as lounge chairs, towels, umbrellas and other equipment provided to patrons, is prohibited, except among immediate family members, caretakers, household members or romantic partners. Cleaning and disinfecting are required after each use.

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