Pools and Spas 

Swimming or just sitting in a hot tub can potentially cause illnesses.

Disease-producing organisms such as Legionella and Pseudomonas can be present in spas.

Recreational water must be continuously disinfected and maintained to ensure the health and safety of bathers.

Public Health Inspectors are responsible for ensuring that public swimming pools, wading pools, water slides and spas provide clean water and safe conditions that comply with existing legislative requirements and standards. They do routine inspections of these facilities.

Information for Public Pool and Spa Operators

Requirements to open a pool or spa facility

If you are planning to open a pool or a public spa, refer to the links below for details about the requirements needed to open and operate such facilities and the necessary forms.

Required Notification - Information

Required Notification of Intention to Open Pool

Required Notification of Intention to Open Public Spa 

Notification Forms

Pool Opening Notification Form

Spa Opening Notification Form

Water Clarity

Every year children drown in pools. Even under good supervision they may drown for a number of reasons, but one reason that is preventable is due to a cloudy pool that appears safe.

A lifeguard or person outside the pool needs to be able to see under water. When children drown, they slip silently under the water. They don't scream, holler or raise a commotion the way it's portrayed in the movies.

Prevent accidents by monitoring water clarity in your pool. Close the pool if you cannot clearly see the black disc.

Pool Disk - a white disk with a black circle in the middle of it

Every regulated pool owner/operator must ensure there is a black disc of 150 mm in diameter on a white background affixed to the bottom of the pool at the deepest point to help check pool clarity.

Check routinely throughout the day, and especially when there are many people in the pool.

  • If you can clearly see the disc, pool clarity is good.
  • If you can see the disc but the water is not crystal clear, there may be recirculation or chemistry problems and you must take corrective action.
  • If the black disc is not clearly visible, close the pool until the water is clear.

If a Public Health Inspector arrives for an inspection and the pool is cloudy and open for use, they will take legal action and close the pool.

Learn more about how you can prevent drowning at the Lifesaving Society 

Additional Resources

Ontario Public Pools Regulation

Admission Standards for Public Pools

Ontario Public Spas Regulation

Outdoor Public Pool Information Manual

Public Spa Owners/Operators Information Manual

Healthy Swimming Fact Sheets

Healthy Swimming Guidelines