NewsLocal News


Johnson County pools prep for Memorial Day after getting late start

JoCo pools prep for Memorial Day weekend
JoCo pools prep for Memorial Day weekend
JoCo pools prep for Memorial Day weekend
Posted at 4:41 PM, May 22, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-22 17:41:33-04

OLATHE, Kan. -- Some Johnson County pools are in a time crunch after getting a late start in the process of reopening for the summer. 

With only a few days until Memorial Day weekend, city pools like Black Bob Bay are working hard to be ready by opening day. 

"We'll go through, get the pools cleaned, get all the pump rooms put together, then we'll fill everything up and fire everything up," said Curtis Heintz, Aquatic Technician, City of Olathe. 

Heintz has been the Aquatic Technician with the city of Olathe for six years. Every year he said pool work typically begins in March. This swim season, pool operators did not get going until April. Heintz said he's hoping the weather will cooperate as they finish checking everything off their to-do list. 

"Little things like checking exhaust fans, fixing concrete, we have a lot of little things that we have to take care of before we can open," said Heintz. 

This week, Black Bob Bay in Olathe is perfecting their water chemistry, one thing inspectors will test when they come out to the pool. 

"We have specific guidelines in the code for the quantity of chlorine that can be in the water and the pH of the water," said Steve Vogelsang, Environmental Health Specialist with Johnson County Department of Health and Environment

Starting the week of Memorial Day, inspectors like Vogelsang will go out and make sure pools aren't violating any county sanitary codes. 

"Altogether, we'll have a little over 500 inspections to complete between Memorial Day and Labor Day," said Vogelsang. 

If violations do occur, Vogelsang said pools could be shut down for hours, and sometimes even days. 

"We're not there to close the pool, we're there to help the pool stay open," said Vogelsang. 

Vogelsang said a chemical imbalance is the most common violation found during an inspection, but it can easily be resolved on the spot, without completely shutting down the pool. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recognize May 21-27 as Healthy and Safe Swimming Week

Healthy and Safe Swimming Week focuses on simple steps swimmers, parents of young swimmers, pool operators, and beach managers can take to help ensure healthy and safe swimming experiences for everyone. It highlights the role that swimmers, parents of young swimmers, aquatics and beach staff, residential pool owners, and public health officials play in preventing outbreaks of illnesses, drowning, and pool chemical injuries. Healthy and Safe Swimming Week promotes swimmer hygiene and the need for swimmers to take an active role in helping to protect themselves and prevent the spread of germs.