Tests Show Entrapment is Preventable
POOL & SPA NEWS
Covered, dual main drains, pool pump speed of 6 fps get safety nod in NSPF report
BY ANNE BAYE ERICKSEN
A report just released by the National Swimming Pool Foundation has concluded that entrapment, evisceration and entanglement accidents can be prevented if pools and spas incorporate three specific design elements: a dual main drain, anti-vortex-plate or grate drain covers, and a maximum pump suction velocity of 6 feet per second.
The report titled Dual Main Drain Suction Entrapment, Hair Entrapment/Entanglement Test Report, is the result of more that 20 NSPF sponsored tests conducted by authors William Rowley, Ph.D., PE, and Glen H Egstrom, Ph.D., in Rowley's home pool in Palos Verdes, Calif., on April 4 and May 23.
As part of the study, Rowley, chairman of the board at Rowley International Inc. in Palos Verdes Estates, Calif., allowed himself to be trapped against several covered and exposed drains in order to get vacuum pressure readings.
Rowley and Egstrom a professor emeritus from the University of California, Los Angeles, concluded that a pool or spa with all three listed design considerations would offer bathers protections against all three types of injury.
"This is the first time, to my knowledge, that simultaneous tests have been done to identify safe conditions for all three circumstances," said Rowley.
"Only if all three hazardous conditions are prevented does a safe condition exist, and from our tests, we couldn't find any.