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242 and 1009 Swimming Pools, Wading Pools, and Spas

Accessible Means of Entry to Pools. Section 242 of the 2010 Standards requires at least two accessible means of entry for larger pools (300 or more linear feet) and at least one accessible entry for smaller pools. This section requires that at least one entry will have to be a sloped entry or a pool lift; the other could be a sloped entry, pool lift, a transfer wall, or a transfer system (technical specifications for each entry type are included at section 1009).

Many commenters supported the scoping and technical requirements for swimming pools. Other commenters stated that the cost of requiring facilities to immediately purchase a pool lift for each indoor and outdoor swimming pool would be very significant especially considering the large number of swimming pools at lodging facilities. One commenter requested that the Department clarify what would be an "alteration" to a swimming pool that would trigger the obligation to comply with the accessible means of entry in the 2010 Standards.

Alterations are covered by section 202.3 of the 2010 Standards and the definition of "alteration" is provided at section 106.5. A physical change to a swimming pool which affects or could affect the usability of the pool is considered to be an alteration. Changes to the mechanical and electrical systems, such as filtration and chlorination systems, are not alterations. Exception 2 to section 202.3 permits an altered swimming pool to comply with applicable requirements to the maximum extent feasible if full compliance is technically infeasible. "Technically infeasible" is also defined in section 106.5 of the 2010 Standards.

The Department also received comments suggesting that it is not appropriate to require two accessible means of entry to wave pools, lazy rivers, sand bottom pools, and other water amusements where there is only one point of entry. Exception 2 of Section 242.2 of the 2010 Standards exempts pools of this type from having to provide more than one accessible means of entry provided that the one accessible means of entry is a swimming pool lift compliant with section 1009.2, a sloped entry compliant with section 1009.3, or a transfer system compliant with section 1009.5 of the 2010 Standards.

Accessible Means of Entry to Wading Pools. Sections 242.3 and 1009.3 of the 2010 Standards require that at least one sloped means of entry is required into the deepest part of each wading pool.

Accessible Means of Entry to Spas. Sections 242.4 and 1009.2, 1009.4, and 1009.5 of the 2010 Standards require spas to meet accessibility requirements, including an accessible means of entry. Where spas are provided in clusters, five percent (5%) but at least one spa in each cluster must be accessible. A pool lift, a transfer wall, or a transfer system will be permitted to provide the required accessible means of entry.