Illinois Law and Pool Safety

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To ensure the safety of those around you, the Chicago drowning accident lawyers at The Kryder Law Group, LLC Accident and Injury Lawyers recommends that you know Illinois law and rules for pools and take some precautions before inviting over friends and family and enjoying yourselves.

Residential Swimming Pool Laws in Illinois

Similar to public pools that are governed by specific regulations, private residential swimming pools are also subject to certain legal requirements and standards that the owners must adhere to. In addition to taking safety precautions, it’s important for private residential property pool owners to be aware of the laws and regulations regarding residential outdoor swimming pools.

What is the Illinois Private Swimming Pool Enclosure Act?

The Private Swimming Pool Enclosure Act is an Illinois law that requires pool owners to properly enclose their pools with pool fences or other effective permanent barrier that is at least 42 inches (3.5 feet) tall.

The Illinois Private Swimming Pool Enclosure Act Explained

What is the Illinois Private Swimming Pool Enclosure Act Infographic
The objective of this legislation is to safeguard against instances of drowning, accidental fatalities, and near-drowning incidents by restricting unauthorized individuals from accessing swimming pools. Pool owners must be aware of this mandate and take measures to guarantee that their pool complies with state-mandated requirements.

Additional Regulations in Chicago or Other Municipalities

It’s important to check the local municipality as they may have additional, more restrictive, laws that are important to follow. For example, in the city of Chicago, pools deeper than 4 feet must be completely enclosed by a fence or other barrier that is 5 feet high with self-closing and self-latching hardware and have clear pool walks that are a minimum of 6 feet wide.

Hot Tub and Above Ground Pool Exceptions

This law applies only to in-ground pools and not hot tubs, jacuzzis, or above ground pools. Specifically, an above ground pool that is at least 42 inches (3.5 feet) tall is exempt.

Do premises liability laws apply to backyard pools in Illinois?

Premises liability laws in Illinois extend their application to backyard pools. These laws aim to safeguard both the pool owner and individuals using it.

Pool Owners Can Take Further Steps to Prevent Accidents Due to Negligence

Pool owners should consider using pool alarms, installing fences, and signs warning of potential dangers. If an accident occurs and negligence is determined, pool owners could be held liable.

What is the attractive nuisance doctrine?

The attractive nuisance doctrine is a legal principle that imposes responsibility on pool owners for injuries sustained by children who are drawn to the pool. This means that if a child enters someone’s property and gets hurt due to insufficient safety measures, the owner may be held accountable, regardless of their awareness of the child’s presence.

Protecting Children

Pool owners must prioritize the safety of children by implementing preventive measures, such as the installation of fences, gates, and prominent signs highlighting potential hazards.

Chicago Guidelines for Private Residential Pools

The City of Chicago Department of Buildings outlines additional safety standards for private residential pools to follow. Residential pools with a water depth of 48 inches or more (4 feet) must comply with the following safety measures:

  • When the pool is in use, a skilled swimmer must be present at all times.
  • Certain safety equipment must be available including a ring buoy with a rope line attached for throwing and a flexible pole for reach-assist rescues.
  • Residential pools may not have a diving board more than 3 feet above the water surface.

Pool Rules Promote Water Safety in the Pool Area

Backyard Pool Rules
Posting pool rules is not required by Illinois but is highly recommended. Here are some rules to help make your private pool safer and avoid serious injuries:

  • Keep the pool area well-lit to prevent slips.
  • Ensure children are supervised at all times.
  • Follow Illinois law and install a fence with a self-latching gate.
  • Check for any hazardous materials or objects in or around the pool before swimming.
  • Swimmers, especially young children, should wear proper flotation devices whenever possible.
  • Properly clean and maintain your pool and check chlorine and pH levels regularly.
  • Have first aid and emergency supplies nearby.
  • Make sure regular pool users take swimming lessons and know basic first aid.

By following these measures and rules for your backyard pool, you can help prevent swimming pool accidents.

How important is it to consider germs when talking about pool safety?

Germs are also important to consider with pool safety. Contaminated pool water can cause illness in swimmers. It’s critical that the pool’s pH, chlorine, and other chemical levels remain balanced to help prevent the growth of germs. The CDC recommends the disinfectant level and pH be checked at least twice per day. If the pool is used heavily, this should be checked even more often.

Check Drains and Prevent Contamination

Pool owners should also be aware of any standing water near or around their pools, which could lead to contamination from sources such as runoff or wildlife. Poor maintenance of pool drains or missing drain covers could also lead to contaminated water.

Shower Before Swimming

Showering before entering the pool and making sure swimmers wear bathing suits can also help reduce the chances of germs being introduced into the water. Recreational water illnesses can become an unpleasant and even serious issue for those trying to enjoy the pool. By following these simple pool safety tips, you can help keep the water clean and everyone healthy.

Illinois Law and Pool Safety
The Kryder Law Group, LLC recommends that you know Illinois laws for backyard pools and take safety precautions.

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