Re-Opening Pools and Spas

Posted By: Brett Waller Articles, COVID-19 Resource Center,
You’re probably wondering, and your residents are asking, when will the pool open? When will the fitness center open? 

As counties are in different phases, it is important to note what’s open in each phase.  While many businesses are open, there remains restrictions on specific businesses and types of activities that affect residential rental property operations. 

In Phase 2, gatherings of up to 5 people outside the household per week are permitted. Personal services are also open with limited capacity. And staffed indoor fitness training and classes with up to five participants are open. Gyms or regular fitness centers are not open. 

Staffed indoor fitness studios and facilities providing private instruction for personal fitness training requiring special equipment are permitted. These fitness training classes must meet strict health and safety guidelines in order to remain open and operating. All fitness training facilities operating during Phase 2 must adopt a written procedure for employee safety and customer interaction that is at least as protective as this procedure and complies with the safety and health requirements.  Additionally, doors and windows must be open where possible and fans should be utilized to improve ventilation. 

The key words in Phase 2 Fitness studio reopening is that these facilities are staffed, require regular handwashing and frequent cleaning and sanitizing with particular emphasis on commonly touched surfaces.

In Phase 3 recreational facilities can open at <50 percent capacity. This means gyms and public pools (including hot tubs).  According to the CDC, public pools can be operated by city or county governments, apartment communities, membership clubs, schools, waterparks, and homeowners’ associations. In Phase 3, reopening pools and spas also requires that managers of these facilities comply with all health and safety guidance provided by the Washington State Department of Health, which includes frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces. To calculate occupancy requirements in Phase 3, you can follow this guidance from the Department of Health. 

You may note that in a modified Phase 1, staffed water recreation facilities are open by appointment only, including lap swimming and small group swimming lessons (public and private). These staffed water recreation facilities, which can operate in Phase 2 as well, must ensure frequent and adequate hand washing with adequate maintenance of supplies. Use disposable gloves where safe and applicable to prevent transmission on tools or other items that are shared and establish a housekeeping schedule that includes frequent cleaning and sanitizing with a particular emphasis on commonly touched surfaces. Additional guidance has been provided by the Washington Department of Health.

Most importantly, be safe out there!

And wear a mask.