Inspectors warn of hazards around swimming pools; urge precautions

FLORENCE, Ala. – Since an incident in which three people were shocked at a swimming pool on Friday in Florence, viewers have reached out to the WHNT News 19 Newsroom. They would like to know more about what precautions to take with electricity around swimming pools.

Whether it’s private or public, precautions should be taken while enjoying all swimming pools.

Florence Fire and Rescue Inspector Lt. Ryan Orrick said the most immediate danger, electricity.

Lt. Ryan Orrick, Florence Fire and Rescue Inspector

“Any covers that are around the pool, you want to make sure they have waterproof covers. You want to make sure they have GFCI protection, which is Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter protection,” explained Orrick. “Especially if you have lights in the pool, or anything you might think might be a hazard electrically, you definitely want to call a qualified electrician to take a look at it just to make sure everything is okay.”

Keep extension and power cords away from the pool. Also make sure radios and other appliances are several feet away from a pool to keep them from getting wet.

Another question for inspectors, what to do if you suspect someone in the pool is being shocked?

“You don’t want to jump in the water at all,” stated Orrick. “You want to try and identify how that pool is serviced, how it is fed. See if you can turn the breaker off for that, maybe that will help them get out and maybe not. But you never want to jump in the pool.”

If you have a pool, make sure there is a fiberglass shepherd’s hook near-by. It may be the only safe way to pull someone to safety.

Lt. Ryan Orrick said to always have someone call 911 if an emergency arises.

Another suggestion officials stress, find a CPR training class to enroll in. They said that’s time which could be used later to save someone’s life.