Electric Hazard in Pool Requires Immediate Action

ElectroShockAt the annual meeting of the Independent Pool & Spa Service Association (IPSSA) last weekend a pool technician related how he identified electric current in a commercial swimming pool and traced the problem to a defective pool light.   He immediately disabled the circuit and instructed the property manager to contact a license electrician to fix the situation at once.  The property owner, however, amazingly advised him that due to budget concerns the plan was to just lock the gate at night when the pool light was on.  The pool tech asked me how to respond.

My advise is clear: when faced with the possibility of death, serious injury or significant property damage you must drop an account if the pool owner will not take immediate steps to fix the problem.  Locking a gate, in this example, is not enough.  You must notify a customer in writing when dropping an account and have documents to show that you mailed the letter.  Certified mail or Express Mail are good options.  You need to be clear regarding the reason for discontinuation of service, being specific about the risk involved.  Where possible call the local board of health department and attempt to get the pool closed.

The need to drop an account for safety concerns like the risk of electric shock is rare, but failing promptly do so may lead to another kind of shock if you are served as a defendant in a lawsuit following injury caused by a dangerous condition at your pool.


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