Some mid-state pools prepare for May opening under new CDC guidelines

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Posted at 10:05 PM, May 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-14 23:56:41-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — As summer nears, some pools are preparing to open under new COVID-19 guidelines.

"Starting May 26, we would open our indoor pools, and then sometime on into the month of June we would open our outdoor pools in those locations," YMCA of Middle Tennessee Chief Strategy Officer Jessica Fain said. The timeline only applies to YMCA locations that are outside of Davidson County. There is currently no timeline for facilities inside of Davidson County, which is still in a phased reopening process.

Fain said the opening will follow the guidelines published by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

The CDC's guidelines for pools to follow to slow the spread of COVID-19 were published earlier this week and include disinfecting rules and social distancing measures, which aim to keep people six feet apart both in the water and on the pool decks.

"Provide physical cues or guides (for example, lane lines in the water or chairs and tables on the deck) and visual cues (for example, tape on the decks, floors, or sidewalks) and signs to ensure that staff, patrons, and swimmers stay at least 6 feet apart from those they don’t live with, both in and out of the water," one guideline suggests.

The CDC has also said there is no evidence of COVID-19 being transmitted via water.

"There is no evidence that the virus that causes COVID-19 can be spread to people through the water in pools, hot tubs, spas, or water play areas. Proper operation and maintenance (including disinfection with chlorine and bromine) of these facilities should inactivate the virus in the water," a CDC web page reads.

"That was something that was good to hear, that was reassuring," Fain said.

It is not clear which, if any, public pools will be open this summer. According to state officials, pools at Tennessee state parks will not be opening in 2020. A spokesperson for the Metro Parks Department said leaders are still discussing what will happen with Metro-run pools and no decision has been made.