Beaches, splash pads, pools and spas

Beaches, pools, hot tubs, and splash pads are popular in the summer. Safety and inspections are crucial.

Water-related illnesses can be passed easily through contaminated recreational water, so public health inspectors work closely with pool and spa operators.

Whether beaches and recreational facilities are used for sport, leisure, or to beat the summer heat, almost everyone enjoys swimming. Public beaches, pools, public spas (hot tubs), and splash pads can serve a large number of people and can also present a health concern if not properly maintained and monitored. Public Health Sudbury & Districts works to prevent and reduce water-borne illness and injury related to recreational water use.

Our online disclosure site, Check Before You Go! has inspection and enforcement-related activities for beaches, splash pads, public pools and spas.

Public pools and spas

What are public pools and spas?

There are two classes of public pools and spas:

Does Public Health Sudbury & Districts inspect public pools and spas?

Yes. Public health inspectors inspect all Class A and B public pools and spas to ensure they meet legal requirements. Due to the fact that water-related illnesses can be passed easily through contaminated recreational water, public health inspectors work closely with pool and spa operators to ensure these recreational water facilities are properly run and maintained.

For inspection and enforcement information, visit Check Before You Go! or contact a public health inspector by calling 705.522.9200, ext. 464 (toll-free 1.866.522.9200).

How often are public pools and spas inspected?

The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care sets out the minimal frequency of compliance inspections. The frequency of inspections is as follows:

Inspections include observations to determine compliance with the regulations, testing water quality and collecting water samples.

Splash pads

What is a public splash pad?

A public splash pad or spray pad is a water play area that has interactive fountains or equipment and has no standing water.

Does Public Health inspect splash pads?

Yes. The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care sets out the minimal frequency of compliance inspections. The frequency of inspections is as follows:

Inspections include observing to determine facility and water safety, testing water quality parameters and collecting water samples.

Public beaches

Swimming at the beach is an enjoyable summer activity. A public beach is defined as a beach area owned/operated by a municipality that the general public has access to, and where there is reason to believe that there is recreational use of the water which may result in waterborne illness or injury as determined by the local medical officer of health.

How often are public beaches inspected?

Public beaches undergo a pre-season assessment annually which includes:

Once the pre-season assessment is completed, routine beach surveillance of all public beaches takes place weekly for the duration of the season which lasts from June to August. This is to monitor the safety of the public beach front and the water. When a beach is sampled, five water samples are taken and submitted to the Public Health Ontario Laboratory for testing of E. coli levels.

It is important to know that the water quality can change with the weather and other factors. Public Health Sudbury & Districts posts public beaches when the water quality may pose a risk to bathers. See Beach Water Quality to learn more about what affects water quality, when notice and warning signs are posted, or when beaches are closed.

For more information on these topics or to file a complaint, contact the Environmental Health Division at Public Health Sudbury & Districts at 705.522.9200, ext. 464. You can also submit your question or complaint electronically.


This item was last modified on July 16, 2018