Here’s how to safely enjoy splash pads this summer

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By WVUA 23 Digital Reporter Kyle Hamrick

This week is Healthy and Safe Swimming Week, an annual initiative of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, hosted by the Alabama Department of Public Health.

The designation is focused on ensuring residents are aware of swimming’s health benefits as well as how to enjoy water activities safely.

Tuscaloosa is home to eight swimming pools and two splash pads, and all are already or will soon be open for summer fun.

This year’s theme is focused on how residents can enjoy splash pads safely. While these areas are usually designed to remove standing water and prevent drowning, splash pads can still transmit germs that can make people sick.

Though chlorine and bromine at recommended levels eliminate most germs in minutes, the germ Crypto (Cryptosporidium) can survive for more than a week in splash pad waters.

The CDC and ADPH offer the following tips to have a healthy and safe day at your local splash pad:

  • DO stay out of the water if you are sick with diarrhea.
  • DO shower before getting in the water.
    • When chlorine mixes with dirt, sweat and waste, there is less chlorine available to kill germs.
  • DO take kids on bathroom breaks or check diapers every hour.
    • Change diapers away from the water to keep germs from getting in.
  • DO dry ears thoroughly with a towel when you get out of the water.
  • DON’T swallow the water.
  • DON’T use the bathroom in the water.
  • DON’T sit or stand on the jets at splash pads. Sitting or standing on jets can rinse waste off bodies and into the play area.

For more information, visit the CDC’s website for more healthy swimming tips.

Read more about Tuscaloosa’s pools opening for the summer here.

Categories: Local News