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CHICAGO (CBS) – About 400 public pools in Illinois have yet to meet new drain safety requirements and could be forced to close on Saturday if they don’t make the necessary modifications.
WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports that the pools are at schools, park district facilities, hotels and apartment complexes.
Illinois Department of Public Health spokeswoman Melanie Arnold said some are scrambling to meet a deadline that they’ve known about for years.
“The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act basically went into effect in 2008,” she said. “Also, the Illinois Department of Public Health modified its code to make sure suction entrapment issues were addressed and that occurred in February of 2010, so they’ve had years.”
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports
In some cases, it’s a relatively cheap and easy fix – simply replacing drain covers.
In others, drains have to be re-built at considerable cost.
“Our last check showed about 90 percent of the pools in Illinois are in compliance with suction entrapment regulations, leaving about 10 percent or 400 pools,” Arnold said. “Some of the pools are still working diligently to come into compliance by the Oct. 1 deadline, so that number may decrease.”
There’s no list of pools in danger of shutting down yet. That will be available on Saturday.