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VERIFY: Yes, your pool is safe from coronavirus, as long as it’s properly maintained

With lots of Floridians now facing the prospect of a low-key “staycation” for spring break this year, how safe is that backyard pool from COVID-19?

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla — With the spread of COVID-19 spurring closings and cancellations at theme parks, festivals, concerts and sporting events, lots of Floridians now face the prospect of a low-key “staycation” for spring break this year.

That leaves swimming pools as one of the last fortresses of fun while people practice social distancing to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

THE QUESTION:

Can coronavirus live and spread in your swimming pool?

THE ANSWER:

Your pool should be a safe place for you and your family, as long as it’s properly maintained.

WHAT WE FOUND:

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “There is no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread to humans through the use of pools and hot tubs. Proper operation, maintenance, and disinfection (e.g., with chlorine and bromine) of pools and hot tubs should remove or inactivate the virus that causes COVID-19.”

If you’re wondering about saltwater pools, this goes for those as well. Your saltwater pool will convert the salt into chlorine.

That said, you can still catch the coronavirus at the pool by touching a surface that has the virus on it, or through respiratory droplets from an infected person entering your body orally or nasally, or possibly through inhalation into the lungs.

The CDC recommends doing your own inspection before you get into any treated water, including: checking the water’s pH and free chlorine or bromine concentration. 

Test strips can test pH levels and free chlorine or bromine levels and can be found at most hardware and pool supply stores.

Troy Lindbeck, Vice President of Marketing for Clearwater-based Pinch A Penny, Inc. said it’s important that pool chemistry is balanced to normal levels to protect against the coronavirus.

“The best way to ensure balance (whether it be a chlorine, salt water pool or a spa) is to follow our ABC’s of pool care,” Lindbeck said in an email to 10News. “We offer free water testing at all locations for pool and spa owners to ensure their pools and spas are balanced.”

RELATED: Busch Gardens Tampa Bay shuts down amid COVID-19 pandemic

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