Notice to Bayhill Homeowners and Residents
Regarding Pool Opening
On Monday, May 18th, the County Code Inspector certified that our pool renovation was completed in accordance with County Code requirements. On Friday, May 22nd, the County Health Inspector spent an hour inspecting our pool. She found several write-ups but determined that the pool could still be opened despite the write-ups. She will be back to inspect the write-ups on June 12th to ensure they have been corrected. In the meantime, we can open the pool provided we consider the CDC’s guidance for doing so. That guidance is as follows and after segments of the CDC’s guidance, I have inserted the Bayhill HOA’s position regarding that guidance in green:
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
“Considerations for Public Pools, Hot Tubs, and Water Playgrounds During COVID-19”
“… CDC offers the following considerations for the safety of those who operate, manage, and use public pools…managed by…homeowners’ associations”
“All decisions about implementing these considerations should be made locally, in collaboration with local health officials. Operators of public aquatic venues can consult with local officials to determine if and how to implement these considerations while adjusting them to meet the unique needs and circumstances of the local jurisdiction. Their implementation should also be informed by what is feasible, practical, and acceptable.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: We utilize the County Health Inspector to determine the condition and safety of our pool and her recent decision to allow us to open verifies both the condition and safety of our pool. In implementing the County’s guidance for opening, we have to emphasize that we embraced their direction based on what was “feasible, practical, and acceptable”.
“Promoting Behaviors that Prevent the Spread of COVID-19”
“Public aquatic venues can consider different strategies to encourage healthy hygiene, including:”
“Encouraging all staff, patrons, and swimmers to wash their hands often and cover their coughs and sneezes.”
“Encouraging the use of cloth face coverings as feasible. Face coverings are most essential in times when physical distancing is difficult. Advise those wearing face coverings to not wear them in the water. Cloth face coverings can be difficult to breathe through when they’re wet.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: It would be difficult to use masks (cloth face coverings) in the pool area. Although you could use masks while on the pool deck, we don’t recommend using them in the water. We believe the appropriate safety measure to follow at the pool is to maintain the appropriate social distance both in and out of the water. Doing so would limit the number of people that could use the pool at a given time. We ask that everybody understand that and be considerate. If the pool is already at maximum capacity for maintaining the appropriate social distance from each other and the folks in the pool only recently arrived, we ask new arrivals wanting to use the pool to consider coming back later. However, if the pool is at maximum capacity for social distancing and the people in the pool have been there for a while, we ask that those in the pool the longest consider leaving so that others may enjoy the pool while ensuring the appropriate social distancing requirements to keep everybody safe.
“Educating staff, patrons, and swimmers about when to stay home (for example, if they have symptoms of COVID-19, have tested positive for COVID-19, or were exposed to someone with COVID-19 within the last 14 days) and when they can safely end their home isolation.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: You have heard it often enough on the news, I’m sure you already know the circumstances under which you should stay at home or quarantine yourself. So, if those circumstances exist, please do stay at home and quarantine yourself for the required 14 days or longer, as appropriate.
“Ensuring adequate supplies to support healthy hygiene. Supplies include soap, hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol (for staff and older children who can safely use hand sanitizer), paper towels, tissues, and no-touch trash cans.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: We will endeavor to keep the restrooms supplied with soap and paper towels. However, given the increase in their use due to the COVID situation, there will be times when supplies run out. Should that happen, please notify the HOA and we’ll do our best to get supplies restocked. However, knowing that an increased usage of these supplies may result in their absence, we recommend that you bring your own hand sanitizer with you.
“Posting signs about how to stop the spread of COVID-19, properly wash hands, promote everyday protective measures, and properly use a cloth face covering in highly visible locations (for example, at deck entrances and at sinks).… “
The Bayhill HOA Position: We believe that everybody has seen it and heard it often enough and should know the requirements for practicing COVID safety. We’ll put signs up in the restrooms to reinforce the COVID safety message. We ask that homeowners who see unacceptable behavior relative to COVID Safety bring it to the attention of the offender in as nice a way as possible. There isn’t much the HOA can do to enforce proper behavior other than to withdraw the pool privileges of the offender. To do so would require evidence of his or her bad behavior. Please keep that in mind when communicating such behavior to the HOA.
“To maintain healthy environments, operators of public aquatic venues may consider:”
“Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces at least daily and shared objects each time they are used. For example: Handrails, slides, and structures for climbing or playing; Lounge chairs, tabletops, pool noodles, and kickboards; Door handles and surfaces of restrooms, handwashing stations, diaper-changing stations, and showers.…”
The Bayhill HOA Position: Please note that the header for this section reads “…operators of public aquatic venues may consider” and then they go on to list the considerations. That gives us the option to ignore or modify some of their considerations/recommendations as it would be financially impossible for the HOA to afford daily cleanings. With that in mind, I would like to note that there have been a number of studies that show that Sunlight and Humidity can kill the COVID virus. That is great because those are two commodities, we have plenty of at the pool. Consequently, I believe that most of the outdoor equipment will sanitize quickly in the open air and the areas that will require attention are the restrooms. Since the HOA cannot clean the restrooms after each use, we recommend that you bring disinfecting wipes and sprays with you should you need to use those spaces. It is important to note at this point that we have had expensive pool pump failures as a result of unwanted oils and chemicals that have found their way into our pool. Therefore, if you are using hand sanitizers, sun blocks, body creams, etc., it is absolutely imperative that you shower before jumping into the pool. In doing so, you could help us prevent the costly repairs we’ve experienced in the past.
“Ensuring that ventilation systems of indoor spaces operate properly. Increasing introduction and circulation of outdoor air as much as possible by opening windows and doors, using fans, or other methods. However, do not open windows and doors if doing so poses a safety risk to staff, patrons, or swimmers.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: We have fans in the restrooms and recommend that you use them while using the restrooms. However, we ask that you turn the fan on when you use the restroom and turn the fan off when you are finished. Doing so will ensure that the fans will function well into the future. Turning them on and leaving them on may facilitate their early failure.
“Taking steps to ensure that all water systems (for example, drinking fountains, decorative fountains, hot tubs) are safe to use after a prolonged facility shutdown to minimize the risk of Legionnaires’ disease and other diseases associated with water.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: We only have the pool, the bathroom facilities, the showers, and the water spicket to be concerned with. The pool has been freshly filled and the chemical levels in the pool satisfied the County Health Inspector. Consequently, the pool is not a threat. The bathrooms were deep cleaned by the LaMonica Cleaning Service so they are not a threat. The outdoor spicket has been operated throughout the renovation of the pool so it also is not a threat. The showers will be run shortly before opening to clear any standing water out of the pipes and then they too should be safe for use. Since the showers and water spicket sit out in the open air, we believe that the Sunlight and Humidity (as mentioned above) should have resolved any COVID concerns with their surfaces.
“Changing deck layouts to ensure that in the standing and seating areas, individuals can remain at least 6 feet apart from those they don’t live with.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: The deck furniture will be positioned to establish a six (6) foot field of separation between each piece of furniture. We ask that if you move a piece of furniture so family members can sit close together that you move it back apart again after you are finished using the furniture.
“Providing physical cues or guides (for example, lane lines in the water or chairs and tables on the deck) and visual cues (for example, tape on the decks, floors, or sidewalks) and signs to ensure that staff, patrons, and swimmers stay at least 6 feet apart from those they don’t live with, both in and out of the water.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: Unfortunately, we cannot tape out safe distances for you at the pool. Consequently, the burden for ensuring Social Distancing falls to you. Please respect each other’s personal space (which with COVID has expanded to a full six (6) feet). That means maintaining a safe distance in the parking lot, on the walk way up to the pool gate, on the pool deck, and in the pool itself. If there is an incident at the pool where somebody needs help in the water, please note that we have a life preserver with a rope attached to it and that we have a large pole with a wire loop on it, both of which can be used to fish someone out of the water. The items are hanging on the fence that is nearest the pool parking lot.
"Staggering use of communal spaces (for example, in the water or breakroom), if possible, and cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces at least daily and shared objects each time they are used.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: As mentioned above, the responsibility for maintaining an adequate social distance is yours. There is nothing we can do at the pool to control that. Also noted above is the fact that we cannot afford to pay someone to constantly disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched. That again is a requirement that falls on you. Consequently, we recommend that you bring your own disinfectant wipes and sprays with you (just remember to throw the wipes in the garbage, not the toilet, and to shower off before you go in the pool).
“Discouraging people from sharing items that are difficult to clean, sanitize, or disinfect or that are meant to come in contact with the face (for example, goggles, nose clips, and snorkels). Discouraging the sharing of items such as food, equipment, toys, and supplies with those they don’t live with. Ensuring adequate equipment for patrons and swimmers, such as kick boards and pool noodles, to minimize sharing to the extent possible, or limiting use of equipment by one group of users at a time and cleaning and disinfecting between use.“
“Maintaining Healthy Operations”
“Being aware of local or state regulatory agency policies on gathering requirements or recommendations to determine if events, such as aquatic fitness classes, swim lessons, swim team practice, swim meets, or pool parties can be held.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: Given the burden of Social Distancing on our ability to use the Bayhill pool, we will not authorize the pool for any aquatic fitness classes, swim lessons, swim team practice, swim meets, or pool parties. The COVID restrictions on pool use will make it hard enough for Bayhill’s residents and guests to use the pool adding a larger requirement for the above mentioned special events, too, would be impossible and unfair to the residents.
“Designating a staff member to be responsible for responding to COVID-19 concerns. All staff should know who this person is and how to contact him or her.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: We don’t employ any pool staff; however, there may be circumstances where somebody might have to report an issue. All COVID related concerns or issues should be reported to the Bayhill HOA President via the BayhillHOA@gmail.com e-mail account.
“Avoiding group events, gatherings, or meetings both in and out of the water if social distancing of at least 6 feet between people who don’t live together cannot be maintained. Exceptions to the social distancing guidance include: Anyone rescuing a distressed swimmer, providing first aid, or performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation, with or without an automated external defibrillator. Individuals in the process of evacuating an aquatic venue or entire facility due to an emergency. If planned events must be conducted, staggering drop-off and pick-up times, as much as possible, to maintain distance of at least 6 feet between people who don’t live together. Asking parents to consider if their children are capable of staying at least 6 feet apart from people they don’t live with before taking them to a public aquatic venue. Limiting any nonessential visitors, volunteers, and activities involving external groups or organizations.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: Most of what is said in the above paragraph is either self-explanatory or has had a Bayhill HOA Position noted earlier for that concerns. One very important thing that needs to be mentioned here is that Parents should accompany their children to the pool to ensure their physical safety as well as their safety as it relates to the COVID concerns.
"Putting systems in place for: Having staff, patrons, and swimmers self-report if they have symptoms of COVID-19, a positive test for COVID19, or were exposed to someone with COVID-19 within the last 14 days. Notifying local health authorities of COVID-19 cases. Notifying staff, patrons, and swimmers (as feasible) of potential COVID-19 exposures while maintaining confidentiality in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Notifying staff, patrons, and swimmers of aquatic venue closures.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: This is the most difficult paragraph to respond to. People should not be reporting on others who contract the COVID virus. Everybody, even the infected, deserve a degree of privacy. However, I would hope that if somebody in the community recently contracted the virus and they had recently used any of our common areas (to include the pool) that they would have the courtesy to anonymously notify the Bayhill HOA President of that fact and in doing so try their best to inform the President of who they were in contact with on Bayhill grounds. The objective, of course, is to notify those who were possibly infected to quarantine themselves in an effort to minimize the spread of the virus. Everybody in that circumstance (the initially infected and the possibly infected) would have their identities protected.
“Preparing for When Someone Gets Sick”
“Notifying health officials and close contacts. Immediately notifying local health officials, staff, patrons, and swimmers of any case of COVID-19 while maintaining confidentiality in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Informing those who have had close contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19 to stay home and self-monitor for symptoms, and follow CDC guidance if symptoms develop.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: The response for this paragraph is the same for the one above it.
“Closing off areas used by a sick person and not using the areas until after cleaning and disinfecting them. Waiting more than 24 hours before cleaning and disinfecting these areas.”
The Bayhill HOA Position: In the event we find that someone using the pool is sick, we will immediately close the pool, with for a 24-hour period (during which the bacteria of any infected areas will likely die) and then arrange for the restrooms to be cleaned by the LaMonica Cleaning Service.
The bottom line is that although the pool is opening on Sunday, May 24th, there are possible risks that come with using it. Since the HOA cannot mitigate all those risks, we are required to inform you that your use of the pool is entirely at your own risk. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the above, please feel free to contact me at BayhillHOA@gmail.com and I will try to answer as best I can.
Bayhill RDA, President