Introduction to this document

Swimming pools - general

Swimming pools are accessed by members of the public. Therefore, if the risks are not managed properly, it could lead to accidents involving serious personal injuries and drowning.

Managing the risks

To help you to identify the hazards associated with swimming pool management and the appropriate ways of controlling them, use our example Risk Assessment - Swimming Pools - General. It covers the generic hazards associated with activities in this environment and suggests control measures to reduce risks to an acceptable level. You should ensure that your document only addresses “significant” hazards, i.e. any that could, and more importantly are likely to, cause an accident or injury.

Make your instructions clear

Don’t include activities in your document that simply don’t need to be there. Work to the principle that if there is any chance of your staff being unaware of the safe way of doing something, then you will need to make it clear in your document. Finally, always ensure that any control measures you identify and follow are decided upon the principle of “so far as is reasonably practicable”.

Note. The list of potential hazards is not exhaustive. However, for your risk assessment to be considered suitable and sufficient in the eyes of the law it must accurately reflect the “significant” hazards found in your swimming pool environment.

Note. This risk assessment only deals with the generic risks associated with the general use of swimming pools. It does not cover the water treatment or water hygiene aspects of swimming pool management, which should be the subject of a separate risk assessment. Neither does it deal with issues arising from pool design, which should be discussed with the installation contractors.

Note. The Health and Safety Executive publication HSG179 Managing Health and Safety in Swimming Pools can be used to assist you in preparing your risk assessment and contains valuable information relating to swimming pool design.