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LCSD takes prompt action to ensure hygiene of public swimming pools

A spokesman for the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) today (June 8) emphasised that there are well established guidelines to deal with situations of stool being found in public swimming pools to ensure the hygiene of public swimming pools.

If stool is found, the pool management will immediately remove it and clear swimmers from the affected pool.

The pool water will be superchlorinated for disinfection. The filtration system in the plant room will continue operation until the pool water has completed one turnover through the system whereby sterilisation and filtration will be carried out.

The pool will then be re-opened after free residual chlorine level returned to normal standard.

The spokesman said that the guidelines were prepared in consultation with the Department of Health and were endorsed by the Steering Committee on Management of Public Swimming Pools.

The spokesman added that there were two cases of stool detection at the Kowloon Park Swimming Pool since the opening of the swimming season in April this year.

Both cases were dealt with promptly in accordance with the established guidelines and were properly recorded.

The spokesman noted that the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap. 132) Public Swimming Pools Regulation stipulates that it is an offence to foul or pollute the pool water at public swimming pools. An offender is liable to a maximum penalty of a $2,000 fine and 14 days’ imprisonment.

The spokesman added that there are toilet facilities in the pool deck areas of Kowloon Park Swimming Pool and there are conspicuous signs to show the locations of these facilities. Swimmers should make use of these facilities when required.

He also appealed for swimmers to work together with the department to upkeep the hygiene of public swimming pools and encourage swimmers to use toilet facilities before swimming. Public swimming pools are public facilities and it is in the interest of all users to keep the pools clean and hygienic.

He added that for those who do not feel well, they should not go to swim.

Regarding media reports on stool reportedly found at Kowloon Park Swimming Pool on June 6, the spokesman noted that at about 6.55am a female swimmer reported to a lifeguard on duty that she had seen faeces at the Outdoor Leisure Pool No.1. The lifeguard then referred the report to the pool supervisor.

The pool supervisor and senior lifeguard immediately went to the leisure pool for inspection but did not find any faeces. There were swimmers around in the pool but neither did they find sight of stool in the pool water. Lifeguards on duty at the pool in question during that shift on June 6 were interviewed by the pool management. All lifeguards concerned said they did not see faeces in pool water on that day.

Ends/Wednesday, June 8, 2005

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