Many people are still working from home. Schools and most public places continue to be closed. Our lives remain temporarily on hold. The social isolation imposed by COVID-19 is changing our habits. With the summer season quickly approaching, many families are expecting to spend their summer vacation at home. But will they be able to use their home pool or spa? What is the risk of transmitting COVID-19 in residential pools and spas?

Good news: It is completely safe to use your home pool or spa as long as you comply with all social distancing rules and measures put in place by local public health authorities. The risk of COVID-19 transmission is linked to coming into close proximity to an infected person or by contacting surfaces contaminated by an infected person. There is no evidence of COVID-19 being spread through pool or spa water.

Take basic precautions

Coronaviruses are typically sensitive to the effects of chlorine. A well-maintained pool or spa that’s clean and whose water has been adequately disinfected with chlorine will be able to neutralize the COVID-19 virus.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), effective disinfection means a free chlorine level of ≥ 0.5 mg per litre of water at a pH < 8.0 for at least 30 minutes. This will create enough chlorine residual to kill the COVID-19 virus. Canadian national and provincial regulations require residential pools and spas to have between 1 to 3 mg of free chlorine per litre of water. At these levels, the concentration of chlorine residual is always above the minimum needed to inactivate the COVID-19 virus in water.

Take full advantage of your pool or spa!

Spending time with your family, getting some fresh air, or simply taking a mental break from work to move, play or relax in the water will do you lots of good, provided you follow Public Health Canada’s recommendations at all times. Have a fun and safe swim!

References:

https://www.inspq.qc.ca/covid-19/environnement/eau-potable-eau-baignade

https://www.cbc.ca/news/covid-questions-pool-1.5541709

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/php/water.html

For more information regarding government directives on COVID-19