The Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment (PDPHE) swimming pool inspection program strives to protect the public through regularly occurring inspections and educational guidance. Water has the potential for gastrointestinal or respiratory disease transmission if water chemistry levels are not properly balanced, pool circulation equipment is not properly functioning, and/or swimmers with a contagious illness are allowed to swim. This program is meant for public and semi-public recreational water facilities. Private (residential) pools are not inspected. For more in-depth definitions for which facilities require inspection by the department for public safety, see pages two and three of the Colorado “Swimming Pools and Mineral Baths” regulations.
Public & Semi-Pools
A public swimming pool is any pool that is intended to be used by the general public for swimming, bathing, or other related purposes regardless of whether a fee is charged for use. These water bodies include public pools and spas, public fountains, spray pads, natural swimming areas, and public baths. Semi-public pools are pools that are associated with hotels, motels, country clubs, health clubs, and mobile home parks. Condominiums and apartment complexes are not included in this definition and are not inspected.
Rules and Regulations
- All public and semi-public swimming areas are required to meet the minimum requirements of disinfectant and bacteriological standards, as set forth in the Colorado “Swimming Pools and Mineral Baths” regulations
- Rules and regulations are enforced through plan review approvals and inspections.
- Year-round swimming facilities are inspected two times a year, as well as on a complaint basis.
- Seasonal facilities are inspected at least once during the months of operation, as well as on a complaint basis.
- The Colorado Board of Health unanimously voted to authorize use of the Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC) by counties with a pool program, effective December 15, 2020. Pueblo County is working to adopt the MAHC locally. There will be a public comment period when this phase of the process is reached along with stakeholder meetings for feedback and education on the MAHC. Stay tuned for more information in Spring 2021. See the new regulatory language in the “Swimming Pools & Mineral Baths” link above.
- The MAHC is a guidance document created by the CDC with input from operators, scientists, and the aquatics industry. The guidelines focus on aquatic facility design and construction, operation, maintenance, policies, and management. The goal of the code is to prevent drownings, injuries, waterborne illness outbreaks, aquatic facility closings, and reduce pool water contamination that can harm the public.
- PDPHE hosted stakeholder meetings on 2/19/20 and 11/5/20 to provide recreational water facility operators the opportunity to learn more about state/local level progress in MAHC adoption and select MAHC regulations. See the stakeholder powerpoints below.
Plan review services are provided to proposed new facilities to ensure they are built according to current regulations and are constructed to facilitate proper operation and maintenance.
- Plan review fees begin at $100 for the application and $50 per hour for review.
- Plan reviews must be submitted no less than 30 days prior to facility “construction, extension, enlarging, remodeling, or modification of public swimming areas or related facilities”
- A new plan review form with a plan review decision tree will be made available when the MAHC is adopted locally.
Bacteriological standards for recreational water facilities are determined through water samples taken by an inspector during each routine inspection. Bacteriological water samples are collected at the water’s surface because swimmers are more likely to ingest water and bacteria (if present) from this area. A $21 laboratory fee is charged for each sample. For more information about the Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment Laboratory, click here.
Inspection Category Fees
Year-round Facilities $125 per inspection for initial water body
Seasonal Facilities $125 per inspection for initial water body
Additional Bodies of Water $25 for each additional feature (hot tub, kiddie pool, splash pad)
Fountains $50 per feature
Follow-up or Complaint Inspection $50 per hour
Plan Review $100 for application and $50 per hour for review
Bacteriological Water Sample $21 per sample
A Certified Pool Operator (CPO) is required in Colorado for all public and semi-public pools. To obtain a CPO certification, an individual can look at the National Swimming Pool Foundation (NSPF) website to find classes offered throughout Colorado.
This course equips the CPO with knowledge about the operation of pools, spas, and other water features including, but not limited to:
- The state requirements of pool and spa management
- Pool chemistry level parameters and corrections
- Waterborne illness risk reduction
- Current or changing pool technologies, etc.
This certification is valid for five years after the certification test is passed. Verification of a current CPO certification will be requested by an inspector during each routine pool inspection.
The NSPF can be contacted at 719-540-9119 or courses can be found at the NSPF Find a Class Page.
Health Department Contact: 719-583-4307