When it comes to keeping small children and pets safe near swimming pools, specific measures are absolute musts, such as having a fence around the perimeter of the water. But even with safety measures like these in place, anything can happen. Drownings can and do still occur even with the best of intentions.
Luckily, homeowners who have swimming pools in their backyards can take advantage of a host of tech-based gadgets that can keep the pool area as safe as possible, even when adult supervision is lacking.
Whether you are just installing a new pool or have had one for years, consider implementing any of the following options to keep your pool as safe as can be.
Wall-Mounted Pool Alarms
Your home might be outfitted with an alarm system that sounds when an intruder enters your home, alerting you to their presence. But your pool can also come equipped with an alarm that will go off if anyone falls in the pool.
These alarms are mounted on surrounding walls or fences and are designed to detect any motion of a person near or in the pool. Once detected, the alarm will go off and alert you that someone is in or close to the pool’s surface. Even if you are inside your home, you’ll still hear the alarm and have enough time to scurry out to be of aid if necessary.
Another alarm system that you may opt for makes use of infrared beams to detect the presence of someone in or around the pool.
Anything can fall into the water aside from a human being, including falling leaves from trees or other debris. In order to minimize the odds of the alarm going off when every little object finds its way into the water, these infrared alarm systems typically only sound off when an object no less than 15 pounds goes in. This will help avoid any unnecessary scares every time something falls into the water. And since many pets are over this weight class, the alarm will still go off if your furry friend falls in too.
That said, your response to the alarm needs to be immediate, as you won’t be alerted until someone actually falls in, as opposed to an alarm that detects the presence of a person that’s getting close to the water.
Personal Immersion Detectors
These detectors are actually worn by individuals who are spending time outdoors and may possibly make their way close to the pool. Usually, parents strap these wristbands on their kids if they plan to spend some time in the backyard. They can even be placed on pet collars to help keep animals safe too.
The wristbands will have to be removed once the child enters the pool as the alarm will be set off once they make their way into the water.
Obviously, the alarm won’t go off if the kids aren’t wearing these wristbands, so they shouldn’t be relied on as the main source of safety when it comes to detecting whether or not anyone falls into the pool.
Underwater Motion Sensors
In addition to the sensors that can be mounted above the water’s surface or even directly on individuals who are at risk of falling into the water, there are sensors that can be positioned underwater to detect the presence of a person or pet. Once the sensor makes this detection, an alarm will sound.
These underwater motion sensors use a sonar grid underwater rather than detect motion. As such, the odds of false alarms being triggered by things such as the movement of debris or ripples in the water from the wind are greatly diminished. They’re designed to detect the presence of an object that is at least 15 pounds in weight.
These motion sensors make great main security systems without the reliance on any other detectors or sensors and are entirely automated. That means they’re always activated so they’ll never miss someone falling into the water. Having said that, it’s necessary to switch these sensors off when using the pool or else the alarm will sound off whenever someone gets in the water.
Surface Motion Sensors
These sensors work by detecting any movement of water. As soon as there are any waves in the water’s surface caused by the presence of an object, the electronic signals from the system will set off an alarm.
These sensors essentially float on the surface in order to detect the disturbance of calm waters. The obvious potential issue with these sensors is that they can set off false alarms, such as when a strong gust of wind causes a ripple in the water. As such, these sensors should not be relied upon as the main alarm system and should only be used as a complementary safety measure.
Pool Gate Sensors
While all pools should have safety fences around them, it’s possible for the gates to accidentally and unknowingly be left unlocked. This presents the perfect opportunity for curious individuals who should otherwise be supervised near the pool to open the gate and make their way into the water. If the gate is opened by a child, parents will be alerted and will have a few moments to make it in time to prevent a horrible accident.
The Bottom Line
The importance of pool safety can never be underestimated. As enjoyable as swimming pools should be, the fun factor should never come before safety. And with the sophisticated gadgets we have today, keeping everyone in the family safe is easier and more convenient than it’s ever been.