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COVID-19 Swimming Pools, Spas & Saunas

NSW Fair Trading has updated its guidance regarding common areas and shared facilities.

Shared facilities can now open so long as restrictions are in place to prevent the spread of COVID 19.

We have prepared an article with guidance on what to take into account when considering opening your shared facilities.  It’s important to note the need to proceed with caution given the exposure of owners to legal liability claims.

The list of strata and community facilities that can be opened includes swimming pools, spas and saunas.

Determining simple but effective measures for unsupervised private swimming pools, spas and saunas is not an area where we have found any guidance as yet.

The reasons for the spread of  COVID 19 are not fully understood, and this includes transmission in water, though there is information regarding the life of the virus on different surfaces.

Listed below is information relating to swimming facilities for detailed consideration by our committees.

Public pools

On 15 May 2020, the NSW government allowed for the opening of outdoor pools with certain restrictions which included a maximum of 10 people in the pool, and the need to maintain physical distancing of 1.5 metres.

Indoor public swimming pools were to remain closed.

On 19 May 2020 indoor pools of a length of 25 metres or more could be open if they met the conditions to be exempt.

Ideas from Swimming NSW

  • Stay away if you or family member unwell
  • Come ready to swim
  • Practice good hand hygiene before and after swimming
  • Equipment and towels not to be shared
  • Get in, train, get out

Ideas from the Australian Institute of Sport

  • Be prepared before arrival (Minimise contact in change rooms, bathrooms and communal areas)
  • The expectation of full body shower with soap at home before and after training
  • Hand sanitiser at entry and exit
  • Get in, train, get out
  • One athlete per lane
  • Minimise unnecessary contact in change rooms, bathrooms and communal areas

Advice from Royal Life Saving Australia

  • Maintain the closure of spas, saunas, changing rooms

People at higher risk

The NSW government has advised that the following groups are at a higher risk of serious infection, so it is best to assume they are residents within your schemes when you are deciding what measures to put in place.

  • People aged 70 and over
  • People aged 65 and over with chronic medical conditions
  • People with a compromised immune system
  • Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people 50 years and older with one or more chronic conditions

Committee meeting

Should you decide to open your pool, sauna or spa facilities, we strongly recommend that once you have determined the detail for each of the following, that these details be formalised via a proper committee meeting.

  • What measures are being introduced and why
  • What signage is being introduced
  • What communication strategies are to be used with consideration to your scheme’s diversity
  • How suggestions and/or concerns from residents are to be dealt with.

Your Strata Plus strata manager continues to be here to assist you through these unprecedented times.

Stay safe

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