The latest Information on the ADA Law for Public Pools and Spas
On September 15, 2010, the Final Rule for the Accessible Design for Recreational Facilities, including public pools and spas, was published in the Federal Register. These standards became the law of the land on March 15, 2011, and compliance was required by March 15, 2012 until that deadline was extended to May 21, 2012, and again, in May, 2012, to January 31, 2013.
Tax incentives for improvements made by businesses in order to comply with the ADA can be found at http://www.ada.gov/taxcred.htm or at www.IRS.gov.
The Aquatic Access IGAT series of pool lifts are defined by the Department of Justice as fixed lifts, and fully comply with the law for public pools. Because Aquatic Access water-powered lifts are easy to install and maintain, they provide READILY ACHIEVABLE ACCESS at a reasonable cost. To be certain that you are investing in accessibility products that comply, a careful reading of the pertinent documents at www.ADA.gov is advised, and specific questions should be addressed to the true accessibility experts at the ADA. A hot line has been established to help you understand the law at 800.514.0301.
242 Swimming Pools, Wading Pools, and Spas
242.1 General. Swimming pools, wading pools, and spas shall comply with 242.
242.2 Swimming Pools. At least two accessible means of entry shall be provided for swimming pools. Accessible means of entry shall be swimming pool lifts complying with 1009.2; sloped entries complying with 1009.3; transfer walls complying with 1009.4; transfer systems complying with 1009.5; and pool stairs complying with 1009.6. At least one accessible means of entry provided shall comply with 1009.2 or 1009.3.
1. Where a swimming pool has less than 300 linear feet (91 m) of swimming pool wall, no more than one accessible means of entry shall be required provided that the accessible means of entry is a swimming pool lift complying with 1009.2 or sloped entry complying with 1009.3.
2. Wave action pools, leisure rivers, sand bottom pools, and other pools where user access is limited to one area shall not be required to provide more than one accessible means of entry provided that the accessible means of entry is a swimming pool lift complying with 1009.2, a sloped entry complying with 1009.3, or a transfer system complying with 1009.5.
3. Catch pools shall not be required to provide an accessible means of entry provided that the catch pool edge is on an accessible route.
Advisory 242.2 Swimming Pools. Where more than one means of access is provided into the water, it is recommended that the means be different. Providing different means of access will better serve the varying needs of people with disabilities in getting into and out of a swimming pool. It is also recommended that where two or more means of access are provided, they not be provided in the same location in the pool. Different locations will provide increased options for entry and exit, especially in larger pools.
Advisory 242.2 Swimming Pools Exception 1. Pool walls at diving areas and areas along pool walls where there is no pool entry because of landscaping or adjacent structures are to be counted when determining the number of accessible means of entry required.
242.3 Wading Pools. At least one accessible means of entry shall be provided for wading pools. Accessible means of entry shall comply with sloped entries complying with 1009.3.
242.4 Spas. At least one accessible means of entry shall be provided for spas. Accessible means of entry shall comply with swimming pool lifts complying with1009.2; transfer walls complying with 1009.4; or transfer systems complying with 1009.5.
EXCEPTION: Where spas are provided in a cluster, no more than 5 percent, but no fewer than one, spa in each cluster shall be required to comply with 242.4.
From 2010 Standards, Swimming Pools, etc.
1009 Swimming Pools, Wading Pools, and Spas
1009.1 General. Where provided, pool lifts, sloped entries, transfer walls, transfer systems, and pool stairs shall comply with 1009.
1009.2 Pool Lifts. Pool lifts shall comply with 1009.2.
Advisory 1009.2 Pool Lifts. There are a variety of seats available on pool lifts ranging from sling seats to those that are preformed or molded. Pool lift seats with backs will enable a larger population of persons with disabilities to use the lift. Pool lift seats that consist of materials that resist corrosion and provide a firm base to transfer will be usable by a wider range of people with disabilities. Additional options such as armrests, head rests, seat belts, and leg support will enhance accessibility and better accommodate people with a wide range of disabilities.
1009.2.1 Pool Lift Location. Pool lifts shall be located where the water level does not exceed 48 inches (1220 mm).
1. Where the entire pool depth is greater than 48 inches (1220 mm), compliance with 1009.2.1 shall not be required.
2. Where multiple pool lift locations are provided, no more than one pool lift shall be required to be located in an area where the water level is 48 inches (1220 mm) maximum.
1009.2.2 Seat Location. In the raised position, the centerline of the seat shall be located over the deck and 16 inches (405 mm) minimum from the edge of the pool. The deck surface between the centerline of the seat and the pool edge shall have a slope not steeper than 1:48.
Figure 1009.2.2 Pool Lift Seat Location
1009.2.3 Clear Deck Space. On the side of the seat opposite the water, a clear deck space shall be provided parallel with the seat. The space shall be 36 inches (915 mm) wide minimum and shall extend forward 48 inches (1220 mm) minimum from a line located 12 inches (305 mm) behind the rear edge of the seat. The clear deck space shall have a slope not steeper than 1:48.
|Figure 1009.2.3 Clear Deck Space at Pool Lifts|
1009.2.4 Seat Height. The height of the lift seat shall be designed to allow a stop at 16 inches (405 mm) minimum to 19 inches (485 mm) maximum measured from the deck to the top of the seat surface when in the raised (load) position.
|Figure 1009.2.4 Pool Lift Seat Height|
1009.2.5 Seat Width. The seat shall be 16 inches (405 mm) wide minimum.
1009.2.6 Footrests and Armrests. Footrests shall be provided and shall move with the seat. If provided, the armrest positioned opposite the water shall be removable or shall fold clear of the seat when the seat is in the raised (load) position.
EXCEPTION: Footrests shall not be required on pool lifts provided in spas.
1009.2.7 Operation. The lift shall be capable of unassisted operation from both the deck and water levels. Controls and operating mechanisms shall be unobstructed when the lift is in use and shall comply with 309.4.
Advisory 1009.2.7 Operation. Pool lifts must be capable of unassisted operation from both the deck and water levels. This will permit a person to call the pool lift when the pool lift is in the opposite position. It is extremely important for a person who is swimming alone to be able to call the pool lift when it is in the up position so he or she will not be stranded in the water for extended periods of time awaiting assistance. The requirement for a pool lift to be independently operable does not preclude assistance from being provided.
1009.2.8 Submerged Depth. The lift shall be designed so that the seat will submerge to a water depth of 18 inches (455 mm) minimum below the stationary water level.
|Figure 1009.2.8 Pool Lift Submerged Depth|
1009.2.9 Lifting Capacity. Single person pool lifts shall have a weight capacity of 300 pounds. (136 kg) minimum and be capable of sustaining a static load of at least one and a half times the rated load.
Advisory 1009.2.9 Lifting Capacity. Single person pool lifts must be capable of supporting a minimum weight of 300 pounds (136 kg) and sustaining a static load of at least one and a half times the rated load. Pool lifts should be provided that meet the needs of the population they serve. Providing a pool lift with a weight capacity greater than 300 pounds (136 kg) may be advisable.