Gov. Beshear: State developing plan to allow limited reopening of public pools

Posted at 12:58 PM, Jun 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-16 22:23:23-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — The summer heat begs for a day at the pool. While Gov. Andy Beshear said the state is developing a plan to allow the limited reopening of public pools at the end of June, people will need to follow health and safety guidelines when they visit.

"Everybody was waiting for the summer to just burn the virus out, and that would be it, and it would disappear. Not so much. It's still here," Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Daniel Rodrigue said.

That doesn't stop people from wanting to cool down, though. While Lexington has no plans to reopen city pools this summer, there are ones in apartment complexes, hotels, community centers, and other private areas.

When it comes to the coronavirus, there's no evidence it can be spread through water.

"Chlorination, whether it's our drinking water or pools, is not a way you're going to get sick from the virus," said Dr. Rodrigue.

Dr. Rodrigue says that's not the issue, though. The problem is being in close contact with a large group of people. So, you should still follow health and safety guidelines put out by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

When it comes to masks, experts aren't saying to wear them in the pool, but you should make sure to pack one for your trip.

"When you're outside the pool setting with others, use a mask to try to decrease the chance that you can transmit to others," said Dr. Rodrigue.

Also, keep a six-foot distance, keep hand sanitizer nearby, and don't share personal items like goggles, nose clips, or pool floats. Of course, don't visit the pool if you're sick.

All to help stop the spread of the virus as more activities reopen.

"When you're in that setting, remember hand hygiene, social distancing, and a mask really does help other people, and if everybody practices it, it will help you as well, because it will help prevent you from getting sick," said Dr. Rodrigue.

Frequently touched surfaces such as handrails and tabletops will also need to be disinfected regularly.