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Recreational Water Facilities

                                                 Certified Pool Operator Training Course Information, click here.

     This page contains links to external agencies.  The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, Public Health Sanitation Division is not responsible for the content of the these sites.

INFORMATION!  Blue-Green Algae Bloom FAQs

Office of Environmental Health Services :

                                       Information on Blue Green Algae Bloom or Harmful Algal Blooms


Links for ADA Requirements           

       Compliance Date: January 31, 2013    

For Installation Permit and Inspection of ADA Compliant Lifts Contact West Virginia Department of Labor


           Disinfection of Hot Tubs Contaminated with Legionella


Latest change in the interpretation for unblockable drains.

CPSC Approves Successor Drain Standard:

Effective May 24, 2021: ANSI/APSP-16 2017 will replace  the ANSI/APSP-16 2011 performance standard

         mandated by the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act. Click here for Federal Register Information

        U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission: 

                Eight Manufacturers Recall Pool and In-Ground Spa Drain Covers Due to Incorrect Ratings
               Covers Pose Possible Entrapment Hazard to Swimmers. 
Click here for more information.


Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act

     The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently designed and posted a new Web page that consolidates information about the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act, including: new frequently asked questions (FAQs), an updated list of certified manufacturers of drain covers and SVRSs, and other important information for stakeholders. Please visit: http://www.poolsafely.gov/

     On December 19, 2007, the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act (VGB) was signed into law by President Bush and is being administered by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). This Act was put into effect to prevent injury and death to users from underwater entrapment on suction drain covers installed in pools and spas. This Act requires all owners of public swimming pools, spas, and hot tubs to replace ALL suction drain covers (grating) with ASME/ANSI A112.19.8 - 2007 compliant drain covers by December 19, 2008. All pool and spa suction outlet covers manufactured, distributed, or entered into commerce in the United States MUST conform to the entrapment protection standards of the ASME/ANSI A112.19.8 - 2007 performance standard. Also, all pools with single suction outlets that are not unblockable must install another level of protection, in addition to a ASME/ANSI A112.19.8 - 2007 compliant drain cover, such as:

  • Safety vacuum release system (SVRS) that complies with ANSI/ASME A112.19.17 or ASTM  F2387; or

  • Suction limiting vent system; or

  • Gravity drainage system; or

  • Automatic pump shut-off; or

  • Drain disablement; or

  • Equivalent system that may be approved by the CPSC.

     Dual or multiple drains must also have a compliant covers.

     New drain covers that meet the current standard are now available in various sizes.  

     If a public pool cannot comply by December 19, 2008, the CPSC recommends that the pool shut down until compliance can be achieved. Pools and spas not open on December 19, 2008 are not required to be in compliance until the day the pool or spa Is re-opened. 

     Additional information concerning the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act:

     Additional Internet Links:

Note:  Pool and Spa Professionals should consult with their own legal counsel with regard to any questions of law or interpretation of the Act or any other federal or state law, regulation, code or ordinance.

NOTE:  Certified Pool Operator Training Course Information, Approved Operator Courses or Approved Lifeguard Courses click here.

Recommendations for Private Residential Hot Tubs and Spas Usage


64-CSR-16, Recreational Water Facilities Rule was updated and passed during the 2007 legislative session.  The Rule became effective on April 18, 2007.  

To obtain a copy of the new Recreational Water Facilities Rule (64 CSR 16):

Go to the West Virginia Secretary of State's web site
Scroll to the bottom of the page
Select either MS Word or WordPerfect format to download the Rule

The Rule incorporates, but does not include a copy of, the

  • ANSI/NSPI-1 2003 Public Swimming Pools Design Standards, and
  • ANSI/NSPI-2 1999 Public Spas Design Standards 
  • ANSI/APSP-7 2006 National Standard for Suction Entrapment Avoidance in Swimming Pools, Wading Pools, Spas, Hot Tubs, and Catch Basins
  • ANSI/IAF-9 2005 Public Water Parks Design Standards

These standards are available through the Association of Pool & Spa Professionals, or directly from the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).  To obtain a copy of ANSI/APSP-7 2006 National Standard for Suction Entrapment Avoidance in Swimming Pools, Wading Pools, Spas, Hot Tubs, and Catch Basins, click here.

If you are unable to obtain these exact standards, please contact the Office of Environmental Health Services District Office that covers your area, or your Local Health Department.


Recreational Water Facilities are permitted and inspected by the Local Health Department in each county. 
If you have any questions about the Rule or permit requirements, contact your Local Health Department.

A Recreational Water Facility is defined as:

A body of water, under the control of a person, that has been modified, improved, constructed or installed for the purpose of public swimming or bathing.  It includes, but is not limited to:

bathing beaches; swimming, wading, and diving pools; water slides, spray pools, lazy rivers, wave pools; spas, hot tubs, therapeutic pools, hydrotherapy pools, and whirlpools; facilities operated by communities, subdivisions, apartment complexes, condominiums, clubs, camps, schools, institutions, parks, mobile home parks, hotels, and similar recreational and public facilities.

A recreational water facility does not include a private residential swimming pool as defined in this rule.

The Rule requires that all Recreational Water Facilities, except bathing beaches, have a qualified water facility operator available for consultation at all times the facility is open for use. 

The following requirements define available for consultation.

  1. Available by telephone within thirty (30) minutes,
  2. Available on-site within sixty (60) minutes of notification, and
  3. Visits the facility a minimum of one (1) time per week during the period of operation

To become a qualified water facility operator the individual must pass a recognized certification course and must keep the certification up to date.

Recreational Water Facilities Forms:

Recreational Water Facilities Links

Page Updated:08/23/2021