City of Jacksonville, Florida Pools Closed Due to Drain Recall – Safety of Children and Other Swimmers Should Be Placed First

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The City of Jacksonville (Florida) closed 33 of its public pools after a warning about potentially deadly drain covers given by a government agency. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced a recall of about one million pools and spa drain covers last Thursday because they “could pose a possible entrapment risk to swimmers and bathers.” City spokesman Ben Bennymon said that all of the pools will remain closed until their drain covers are inspected and if needed, replaced.
Pool drains contain up to 500 pounds of vacuum force and can cause severe personal injuries, especially to young children. Often times younger kid’s bathing suits, necklaces, and hair get trapped in the drain. In extreme cases, swimmers can be disemboweled by the suction. According to the CPSC, 97 suction entrapment incidents were reported between 1999 and 2010, and 12 resulted in death. In addition, 82 injuries were reported during that same period.
Pool entrapment death is one of the most horrifying ways a child or adult can die. Pool drain entrapment occurs when a drain is defective or missing. Normal pool operation involves cycling the water through a filtration system, and in order to do this, water must be sucked out of the pool through the drain. When the cover is defective, excessive suction can cause the swimmer to be trapped in the drain. Drain covers in Jacksonville public and residential pools should be inspected on a regular basis for brittleness, cracks, lose screws, and improper fit to prevent serious death or injury. For more information on this topic, see city pools closed after pool drain recall.

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