February 21, 2018

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Revised edition of swimming pool safety advice published

A revised version of the Health and Safety Executive’s HSG179 Health and Safety in Swimming Pools has been published.

It contains guidance for all those involved in the operation and management of swimming pools, to minimise risks to workers and pool users, without unduly restricting pool activities.

A pool operator is defined as the designated person or organisation responsible for operating the pool.

This is the fourth edition (first published as Safety in Swimming Pools), and brings the guidance up to date with changes in health and safety law and new developments in relation to equipment and facilities.

It has been co-written with stakeholders from across the leisure industry to set out the measures to take to reduce risks and comply with the law.

All public pools

The guidance applies to pools used by the public for water-related activities, as defined in BS EN 15288–2, as Type 1, 2 or 3.

These include:

  • communal pools
  • leisure pools
  • water parks
  • hotel pools
  • camping pools
  • club pools
  • paddling pools that are part of a larger pool or complex
  • therapeutic pools
  • pools in places of education
  • diving pools
  • military training pools
  • rescue training pools
  • counter-current training pools
  • scuba-diving pools.

It may also apply in other non-conventional settings, such as to holiday lets in residential complexes. The guidance does not apply to: private swimming pools in domestic premises while being used solely by the owner, family and guests; stand-alone children’s paddling pools in public parks; ˜ stand-alone spa pools.

This edition of the guidance no longer contains detailed information on swimming pool design or pool water treatment.

The Health and Safety Executive advise that it is read online so that full use can be made of the links to more detailed or additional HSE and industry guidance.



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