US communities face tough choices on opening public pools

May 25, 2020 - 5:59 pm

Public pools in the U.S. will look very different this summer if they open at all with the coronavirus threat still looming. 

Among the changes pools are planning are putting their mostly teenage lifeguards in charge of maintaining social distancing among patrons and spotting COVID-19 symptoms. 

Dr. Justin Sempsrott, the medical director for the lifeguard certification program Starguard Elite, says pools also plan to screen patrons' temperatures, require lifeguards to wear masks and significantly reduce the number of swimmers allowed in the water and locker rooms.

Industry groups and companies, meanwhile, report that sales of inflatable pools, swimming gear and kayaks are up.

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