If you search online for safety in swimming pools, there are numerous guidelines and health and safety pointers that owners need to know and follow, from chlorine levels to permitted temperatures, but little is mentioned of the dangerous visual effect of too much glare in swimming pools.
Excessive sunlight and glare can create some serious safety concerns in indoor swimming pools
Pools in leisure centres and schools have a variety of safety requirements but one often overlooked issue is that of solar glare and sunlight reflection on the water. With sun streaming across the water, lifeguards and staff find there is dangerously little visibility of swimmers in the pool. This is something that tends to be flagged up only after the pool starts being used but has to be addressed. Swimming in sunshine: not necessarily a good idea!
We were consulted by the Estates Manager at The Lady Eleanor Holles School in Hampton where they had this issue at their pool and the lifeguard was worried by the lack of visibility of students in the pool. As a result we have supplied and installed motorised roller blinds in AlphaShade 20 screen fabric (pictured). This fabric is PVC coated fibreglass and is water and moisture-resistant. It also has a reflective backing to combat solar heat gain, yet still retains a view through to the grounds outside. The motors are housed inside the roller tube and are guaranteed to work in damp and humid environments.
Blinds for privacy in pool areas
We have had other requests for blinds to add an element of privacy to public pools. One leisure centre required us to fit blinds to the external windows surrounding their public pool as local patrons requested complete privacy whilst using the facility, due to their religious beliefs.
Another public leisure centre discovered they needed to shield the pool users from the unwanted attention of local voyeurs.
Important design considerations
Blinds are very much something to be considered when planning a new pool or refurbishment to a pool area whether for windows or rooflights. To ensure longevity, they should consist of the appropriate fabric and hardware that will withstand humid, chlorine conditions. We will be happy to discuss with you.