The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was introduced to ensure that those with disabilities do not face discrimination in various areas. Public swimming pools and spas, as well as hotel swimming pools and spas (places of lodging, inns, motels, and even most b&bs), are one example. While many public pools have taken steps to ensure compliance, some still fall short of the mark. How can you ensure that your facility is up to the legal standard?
Public pools should not preclude disabled parties from entering and enjoying facilities. What do ADA-compliant swimming pools and spa access look like?
Removing barriers to entry
Disabilities come in numerous forms and so do barriers to entry. It’s important for public pools and hotel pools and spas to remove these barriers, as far as practicable. For wheelchair users, pools should have pool lifts and spa lifts, and/or sloped entries that make easy entry possible. Of course, access is only the first aspect. Disabled people must also be safe when they have entered the water, on top of having a safe means of exiting the pool. There should be no shortage of grab bars around the premises.
Many people with disabilities will be able to enter the pool from a standing position, but they may still need a little assistance. Stairways into the premises and in the pool area and spa access should be safe and not restrict the ability to move freely. Public and hotel pool and spa managers should also ensure that they have enough portable ladders around the perimeter so that swimmers can enter and exit the pool safely and with relative ease.
Making sure that your facilities are ADA-compliant is essential. If you have any questions about this or are facing legal challenges, make sure you reach out to someone with the necessary knowledge in this area.