COVID-19 restrictions will force area pools to miss the traditional Memorial Day weekend opening, according to a county press release.
The order applies to all county-operated pools as well as those run by apartments and condominium buildings, homeowner associations and private swim clubs.
“We know that many in the community equate pool openings with the official start of the summer season, but ongoing COVID-19 restrictions make it impossible to safely open so that swimmers and employees are protected from the spread,” said County Health Officer Dr. Travis Gayles in the release.
In the meantime, the Department of Health and Human Services’ Licensure & Regulatory Services program recommends that pool operators:
- Continue with all pre-opening maintenance and repairs until further guidance and information is released by the Maryland Department of Health
- Contact Licensure & Regulatory Services to schedule a pre-opening inspection, which are taking place, and
- Prepare now, as there may be a delay in scheduling an inspection once an opening date is announced.
When a reopening date is announced, there will likely be prevention practices in place that highlight hand washing, covering coughs and sneezes, the wearing of face coverings, where feasible; and space modifications to ensure physical distancing.
Once pools are permitted to open, patrons can expect to see new safety procedures including, but not necessarily limited to:
- Limiting the number of people admitted into the pool
- Closing of some pool features
- Ensuring people maintain physical distancing of at least six feet on the pool deck; and
- Requesting that people bring their own pool chairs.