The Utah County Health Department ordered Pleasant Grove Veteran’s Memorial Swimming Pool to create protocol to address what happens if a pump shuts down following a Tuesday incident that sent about 50 people to area hospitals for chlorine poisoning.
“Protocols for when (a) pump is shut down will be updated to remove patrons until chemicals have been verified,” a Utah County Health Department inspection report from Wednesday reads. “We will verify this before reopening the pool.”
The pool’s chemical levels tested within acceptable ranges Wednesday, according to inspection reports obtained through a public records request. Utah County Health Department inspectors spent an hour and 15 minutes at the pool that morning.
The pool manager told inspectors the pool will work with lifeguards to get swimmers out of the pool if the pump shuts down again, according to the inspection report. The pump has never turned off before and has not shut off again since Tuesday.
A follow-up inspection is required before the pool reopens and is scheduled for Monday, according to the inspection. The chlorine incident is believed to have been caused by equipment failure.
Lindon and American Fork pools are allowing Pleasant Grove pass holders to swim at their facilities while the Pleasant Grove pool remains closed.
Low exposures to chlorine can lead to symptoms such as coughing or eye and throat irritation, while higher levels can lead to more serious symptoms such as fluid accumulating in the lungs and airways, leading to respiratory distress.
Inspection reports from the last nine years have not identified any major problems with the pool. The report from an inspection on May 17 found no issues, but did ask for broken tile in the women’s changing room to be fixed and for soap to be replaced.
“Everything looks good,” the inspection reads.
Reports from previous years have brought up issues that need to be fixed, such as lights that needed to be repaired before nighttime swimming was allowed.
The Utah County Health Department tests and inspects pools before they are allowed to open. It drops in once a month afterward for testing, and pools are responsible for doing additional testing, as well.
Requiring the additional pump protocol is not something required by the state, according to Aislynn Tolman-Hill, spokeswoman for the Utah County Health Department.
“It is something we are asking them to do,” she said.
She said the health department has no plans to fine the pool, and that it has not had any violations. She referenced the May 17 inspection, which found no issues.
“Everything was up to code, everything looked good,” Tolman-Hill said.
She said Pleasant Grove and the pool’s manager have been very cooperative following the incident and have done what has been required