New supervision rules in place for city pools
The city is tightening rules when it comes to supervising children at public pools this spring, following the drowning of a young boy last year.
Under the new rules, one caregiver has to be present for every three children under the age of eight. That supervisor has to be over 15.
That’s compared to the old rules, which would allow one 13-year-old caregiver to watch over five young children.
Mark Dafoe, operations supervisor for the Terwilleger Community Recreation Centre, said the changes were an indirect result of the drowning of a seven-year-old boy at the O’Leary pool last year.
The boy was in provincial care at the time.
"Anytime we have any sort of incident, we do a full debriefing and look at our practices … see if they are appropriate and still viable," he said.
Dafoe said the reviews’ recommendations bring the city more in line with the rules at other pools across Canada.
The new rules have been posted at pools and on the city’s 311 information services. City schools have been notified as well.
"We’ve been doing our best to notify people ahead of time that this change is in place," Dafoe said.
He said lifeguards are holding fast to the new guidelines, and people who show up to pools without enough supervisors risk being turned away.