The Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness' Public Facilities Program inspects public swimming pools in Metro Louisville to enforce regulations passed by the state of Kentucky and the Metro Louisville Board of Health. Pools are inspected twice annually, and inspections include the following: verifying certified lifeguards or qualified attendants are on duty, water quality, all equipment is working properly to disinfect and filter the water, all safety equipment is on deck and in proper working order.
Water samples are collected weekly for bacteria testing and laboratory services are provided by the Louisville Metro Department of Health and Wellness.
Public pools include those operated by communities, subdivisions, apartment complexes, condominiums, clubs, camps, schools, institutions, parks, mobile home parks, hotels, recreational areas, or similar public facilities. It does not include any facilities that are at private, single-family residence, intended only for the use of the owner and guests.
- Pool Closures
The following violations will lead to immediate pool closures:
- Lifeguard requirement not met.
- Violations of the Virginia Graeme Baker Act.
- No pool operator available when pool is open for use.
- Inoperable emergency phone.
- Turbidity-facility water does not have sufficient clarity at all times to see that the main drain grate is clearly visible.
- Chlorinator, pump, or filter is not working.
- No disinfectant residual in water.
- pH and/or disinfectant out of range.
- Two consecutive positive water samples.
- Broken glass in the pool area.
- Lifeguard Requirements
Lifeguards are required regardless of water surface area that allow bathers 17 years old and under to enter facility area without a responsible adult.
Lifeguards are required when pool is 2000 square feet or greater, at a rate of one lifeguard per 2000 square feet.
Lifeguards are optional in pools less than 2000 square feet and 5 feet or under in depth.
Pools that are less than 2000 square feet but greater than 5 feet in depth follow the 2 and 5 rule.
- NO ONE MAY BE IN THE POOL WHILE ALONE AND NO MORE THAN FIVE PERSONS MAY BE IN THE POOL AT ANY TIME.
- PERSONS UNDER 17 YEARS MUST BE ACCOMPANIED BY AN ADULT.
When the public swimming pool is without water safety personnel on duty, a locked barrier with a minimum height of 4 feet shall be present at the pool entrance. In addition, one of the following warning signs shall be placed in plain view with lettering 2 inches in height:
A) “POOL CLOSED, NO SWIMMING, NO LIFEGUARD ON DUTY": PERSONS FOUND IN VIOLATION SHALL BE SUBJECT TO A FINE OF UP TO $100.00.”
B) “WARNING, NO LIFEGUARD ON DUTY, NO ONE MAY BE ALONE AND NO MORE THAN 5 PERSONS MAY BE IN THE POOL AT ANY TIME. PERSONS UNDER 16 MUST BE ACCOMPANIED BY AN ADULT. PERSONS FOUND IN VIOLATION SHALL BE SUBJECT TO A FINE UP TO $100.00”
C) “WARNING, NO LIFEGUARD ON DUTY, NO PERSON MAY ENTER THE FACILITY AREA ALONE OR SWIM ALONE. PERSONS UNDER 17 YEARS MUST BE ACCOMPANIED BY AN ADULT. PERSONS FOUND IN VIOLATION SHALL BE SUBJECT TO A FINE UP TO $100.00”
- Lifeguard Plan Submittals
A facility may submit an alternative lifeguard staffing plan that:
- Has been certified by an independent third-party compliance specialist (Ellis Group and Red Cross);
- Designates the number of lifeguards necessary to ensure each lifeguard is capable of viewing the entire area of the assigned zone of patron surveillance; and
- Ensures the lifeguard is able to reach the furthest extent of the assigned zone of patron surveillance within twenty (20) seconds.
All approved alternative lifeguard plans must:
- Be kept on file with the Public Safety Branch and Local Health Department
- Be resubmitted for approval due to any of the following changes:
- Change in the shape of size of the pool
- Changes that obstruct the lifeguard’s ability to see the bottom of the pool
- Change in ownership
- Required Testing
Facility Operator or water safety personnel shall perform water quality tests before opening and during all hours of operation based on the frequency schedule listed below, and record all tests results on an operational log. Log is to be maintained on site and made available to the inspector upon request.
A) Water quality shall be checked once prior to opening and at least 3 times daily with a greater frequency when bather load or climatic conditions warrant;
B) Turbidity-daily or more often as needed;
C) Alkalinity, Cyanuric Acid (if used in outdoor pools)-weekly, or more often as needed:
D) Temperature: Spas and indoor facilities shall be checked once prior to opening and three times daily. The water temperature for indoor swimming facilities other than spas shall be in a range of 76 ° F to 84 ° F. Spa temperatures should not exceed 104 ° F.
- Construction/Remodel Requirements
No person shall construct, alter or reconstruct a public swimming or bathing facility until approval of detailed plans and specifications with additional supporting design data as required in this regulation for the proposed review of the plans.
For more information, contact the Environmental Engineer at 502-574-6656 or 574-6655 or to submit plans, please email: [email protected].
- Complaints/Incident Reporting
Complaints can be made by contacting the Division of Environmental Health and Emergency Preparedness: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at 574-6650.
To make a complaint provide the following information: Accurate address (street number and name) of problem site Full description of problem. Owner or occupant name, address, phone #, if known. Your name, address, phone number.
Confidentiality Policy: Names and/or e-mail addresses of complainants are not released but are used for clarification of problem and to report findings.
To report an incident:
For all drownings, near-drownings and serious injuries requiring transport to advanced medical care you must submit the incident report to our agency within 24 hours of the incident:
- Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness, Division of Environmental Health and Emergency Preparedness at (502) 574-6650 (If after hours, follow emergency prompts).
- Incidents requiring transport to a medical facility must be reported by phone to the health department as soon as possible - but not to exceed 2 hours. Email: [email protected] or fax: 502-574-6657
- Download to complete the Pool Incident Report
Local Fees (have not changed)Outdoor Pool $75
Indoor Pool $200 for the first two pools, $100 for each additional pool (not to exceed $500)
State Fees – revised 2022New Construction skimmer pool
- Skimmer Pool Plan Review Fee $157.50
- One Rough-In Inspection $105.00
- One Final Inspection $157.50
- Total for a New Skimmer Pool $420.00
- Gutter Pool Plan Review Fee $315.00
- One Rough-In Inspection $105.00
- One Final Inspection $157.50
- Total Fees for a New Gutter Pool $577.50
- Permit Fee $100
- 1000 ft² or less $90
- 1001-1500 ft² $150
- 1501-2000 ft² $200
- 2001 ft² and above $200
- Each additional 500 ft² $50
- Splash Pad Inspection $250 per year (+$75 for water features)
- Spas and Hot Tub Inspection $150 per year
- Helpful Links
- Safety information from poolsafely.gov
- Pool and hot tub information from the Centers for Disease Control and Preventions (CDC)
- Fecal Contamination Procedure
- Lifeguard information
- Pool Rules
- Spa Rules
- Spray Ground Rules
- 2 and 5 Rules
- Non-Lifeguarded Pools
- Pool Closed
- No Lifeguard on Duty