Health and Safety in Recreational Waters

By Giampaoli, Saverio; Spica, Vincenzo Romano | Bulletin of the World Health Organization, February 2014 | Go to article overview

Health and Safety in Recreational Waters


Giampaoli, Saverio, Spica, Vincenzo Romano, Bulletin of the World Health Organization


The recreational use of waters has increased in recent decades all over the world. Swimming pools and other recreational water facilities offer opportunities for enjoyment and health promotion, but they also may involve health risks, despite the fact that better management and modern technologies for water treatment and quality monitoring (e.g. real-time protocols for detecting bacteria), have made such facilities safer. (1,2)

Several communicable diseases--cryptosporidiosis, giardiasis, leptospirosis, legionellosis, bacterial and viral gastroenteritis--are commonly associated with bathing in recreational waters. (3,4) According to field study surveys in different countries, the rate of diarrhoeal illness among swimmers ranges from 3 to 8%. (5,6) Injuries are also common. In the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland alone, more than 13 000 injuries are estimated to occur annually, on average, among bathers (3,4) Preventing injuries, drownings, the toxic effects of chemical contaminants and outbreaks of waterborne diseases in people who swim in recreational waters calls for a sustained, concerted, multisectoral effort involving epidemiologists, physicians, microbiologists, toxicologists, builders, public opinion leaders and public health authorities.

Swimming pools and spas are used by millions of people seeking recreation, rehabilitation, wellness and other health benefits. According to 2011 market data issued by the European Union of Swimming Pool and Spa Associations, 5.7 million pools exist in Europe, or about one for every 150 inhabitants. (7) A large part of the world's population is exposed to the health risks posed by swimming pools, which account for much of the world's water consumption. (8) This includes children, the elderly, pregnant women and people with immunodeficiency and disabilities. People in certain occupations, such as swimming coaches, water sport professionals and pool operators, are also exposed to such risks.

In the twenty-first century, international safety standards or harmonized national safety laws are essential in light of the booming tourist industry--now the third largest in the world. From a global health perspective, water facilities must be made safe not just for resident populations, but also for travellers. The absence of an international regulatory framework for pool and spa safety and the presence of incomplete national regulations in many countries put local populations and visitors at risk. For example, Europe's lack of a directive on safety in swimming pools and other recreational water facilities limits standardization and harmonization throughout the continent.

Several institutions have recognized the need for international pool and spa safety regulations. This point was discussed in Rome last April, at the Fifth International Conference on Swimming Pool and Spa. (9) The Conference focused on the role of aquatic recreational environments in health promotion but also called attention to the need for good surveillance and prevention to reduce safety hazards. Engineers, chemists, biologists, public health experts, architects, sociologists, occupational medicine specialists and ecologists were in attendance. This large and committed panel of experts can update safety guidelines periodically and support their local dissemination through universities and research centres, public health authorities, swimming pool managers and sports clubs and organizations catering to tourists and local residents. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Health and Safety in Recreational Waters
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.