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Federal law requires new drain covers for public pools
Monday, February 2nd, 2009

Government agencies have been wavering on how to enforce a new federal law that requires new drain covers on pool filtration systems which would prevent children from being suctioned to the filter leading to permanent welts shaped like the drain or disembowelment and death. Child safety advocates fear that kids lives are at risk while a solution is reached.

Each state is enforcing the law differently because the Consumer Product Safety Commission, which oversees the law, is too small to do so and therefore have looked to the state public health and safety departments for help. Some states and towns are being more lenient than others. Some health and safety officials have said that the law wasn't being followed because they didn't have the authority to enforce it. In many areas they have allowed pools to remain open or have not inspected the pools to shut them down if they have not complied with the law. Some pools across the country have closed or been shut down. In other cases, state health departments granted extensions if the pools turn off the suction at the bottom until covers arrive. For others the decision to shut their pools came at the request of insurance companies.

Experts advise owners of residential pools to make the modifications, too. Ultimately, a pool owner will be held liable if there is a personal injury or wrongful death at a pool lacking the proper drain covers.

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