Have Fun and Be Safe at the Pool this Summer


A splash in the pool during the warm summer months is a welcome relief for many Gainesville residents. All three municipal pools have been experiencing high attendance and aquatics staff of the City of Gainesville Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Affairs Department (PRCA) would like to offer a few helpful tips to make pool time a safe and fun experience for all.

“This is a busy time of year at the aquatic facilities. It’s great to see how much the community enjoys them,” says Jeff Moffitt, recreation supervisor. “That’s why it’s important that our patrons are informed of how to make their visit safe for their family and other visitors.”

Please consider the following when planning and during your visit to a public pool:
Sun safety is water safety. Apply sunscreen 30 minutes before going into the sun for maximum absorption. Use sunscreen that is at least 30 SPF and reapply every 2 hours.

Keep eyes and ears open. Do not participate in distracting activities while supervising children swimming or playing in water. Remember, if your child is in the water, you should be too.

Be informed of the rules. Follow all the posted safety rules and make sure to read and discuss safety rules with children upon arrival at a water recreation site. Lifeguards and staff are on hand to answer any questions you have.

Use a floatation safety device. Wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket if you are a non-swimmer or are not comfortable in the water.

Stay away during illness. Germs and parasites spread easily in water, so it is important for adults and children to avoid the pools, especially while suffering from diarrhea. Anytime a fecal accident occurs, the pool must be evacuated and emergency chlorination treatment is administered.

Wash before and after pool time. Rinsing off before entering the pool helps to keep water quality stable by removing sweat and other dirt. An additional shower after exiting the water can help to remove any germs.

Keep pool water in the pool. Remind children not to swallow the water, but also keep hydrated by drinking water during warm weather and take regular bathroom breaks. Check diapers, and change them in the bathroom (not poolside), to keep germs away from the pool.

Clear the pool at the first sound of thunder. The lifeguard will evacuate the pool deck and monitor the weather for safety. The facility will remain cleared for 30 minutes after the last observed lightning or thunder. Patrons are expected to clear the pool deck and seek shelter inside the restrooms or in a fully enclosed metal vehicle with the windows up.

Learn to swim no matter your age. This is one of the best ways to be safer in and around the water.

Information about the Dwight H. Hunter (Northeast), H. Spurgeon Cherry (Westside) and Andrew R. Mickle Sr. Pools, including hours, location, admission, swim lessons and more can be found at,AquaticsFitness/Aquatics/Pools.aspx.

For any additional information, please contact Jeff Moffitt, CPRP, AFO, recreation supervisor, at 352-393-8732 or

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