The State of Florida Bureau of Environmental Health (Tallahassee headquartered) wants to significantly change your swimming pool water test. In a proposed rule that is expected to pass and take effect in January of 2023, the Sunshine State has decided that the high limit for chlorine in a swimming pool should mirror the maximum chlorine level established by the EPA for safe drinking water. The current Florida Pool Chlorine Level acceptable range for chlorine in a swimming pool is 1 ppm to 10 ppm. So, who’s been drinking the Butt Water?

The easy argument here is the 4 ppm maximum is already included in the label instructions for the product on the bucket (True Story – l👀K for yourself). And, of course, it is a violation of federal law to use in a manner inconsistent with its labeling (See Calcium Hypochlorite label below).

Current Calcium Hypochlorite for Pool Use Label

Florida Pool Chlorine Level

The other oddity I am more ok with is the change in the acceptable pH range. Florida is looking to expand from 7.2 to 7.8 to 7.0 to 7.8. I’m okay with this. I had heard they looked at 6.8 as a low limit on pH in swimming pools, which concerned me. 7.0 is neutral and can be read with the popular test kits pool professionals carry, so no harm, no foul.

Similar story https://www.drinking-water.org/treatment/water-smells-like-chlorine/

If you think it is only a Florida worry, think about the precedence this sets 🤦‍♂️

The other significant changes were allowing plastic water bottles onto the pool deck and legalizing swim-up bars in the state. That’s a whole other story. I don’t mind swimming up bars (I won’t get in the water at a public pool. I don’t maintain myself anyway), so it is what it is. Plastic water bottles aren’t an issue as long as they keep them out of the pool. See the actual proposal below:

Section I
Notice of Development of Proposed Rules
and Negotiated Rulemaking
NONE
Section II
Proposed Rules
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
Division of Environmental Health
RULE NO.: RULE TITLE:
64E-9.004 Operational Requirements
PURPOSE AND EFFECT: The rule amendments will update
standards adopted by reference, to allow for commercially
bottled water in plastic bottles on the public pool wet deck for
patron hydration, and to provide for the sanitation and safety

criteria to permit swim-up bars in public swimming pools in
Florida.

SUMMARY: Update operational requirements for public
pools.
SUMMARY OF STATEMENT OF ESTIMATED
REGULATORY COSTS AND LEGISLATIVE
RATIFICATION:
The Agency has determined that this will not have an adverse
impact on small business or likely increase directly or indirectly
regulatory costs in excess of $200,000 in the aggregate within
one year after the implementation of the rule. A SERC has not
been prepared by the Agency.
The Agency has determined that the proposed rule is not
expected to require legislative ratification based on the
statement of estimated regulatory costs or if no SERC is
required, the information expressly relied upon and described
herein: Based on the SERC checklist, this rulemaking will not
have an adverse impact on regulatory costs in excess of $1
million within five years as established in s.120.541(2)(a), F.S.
Any person who wishes to provide information regarding a
statement of estimated regulatory costs, or provide a proposal
for a lower cost regulatory alternative must do so in writing
within 21 days of this notice.
Any person who wishes to provide information regarding a
statement of estimated regulatory costs, or provide a proposal
for a lower cost regulatory alternative must do so in writing
within 21 days of this notice.
RULEMAKING AUTHORITY: 381.006, 514.021, FS
LAW IMPLEMENTED: 381.006, 514.021, 514.031, FS
IF REQUESTED WITHIN 21 DAYS OF THE DATE OF THIS
NOTICE, A HEARING WILL BE SCHEDULED AND
ANNOUNCED IN THE FAR.
THE PERSON TO BE CONTACTED REGARDING THE
PROPOSED RULE IS: Bob Vincent, Environmental
Administrator–Bureau of Environmental Health, 4052 Bald
Cypress Way, Bin A-08, Tallahassee, FL 32399-1742 or
[email protected]
THE FULL TEXT OF THE PROPOSED RULE IS:
64E-9.004 Operational Requirements.
(1) Water Quality – The water supply for all pools shall be
an approved potable water system or shall meet the
requirements for potable water systems by the submission from
the operator of annual bacteriological and chemical laboratory
reports to the county health department. Salt water sources are
exempt from the potable water chemical standards except for
iron and color requirements.
(a) through (c) No change.
(d) Chemical quality – Chemicals used in controlling the
quality of the pool water shall be tested and approved using the
NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 60-2021 60-2011, Drinking Water
Treatment Chemicals-Health Effects, April 16, 2021 dated May
2011, or Chapter 27 of NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 50-2020,
Equipment and Chemicals for Swimming Pools, Spas, Hot
Tubs, and Other Recreational Water Facilities, October 21,
2020, which is incorporated by reference in these rules and shall
be compatible with other accepted chemicals used in pools.
NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 60-2021 and Chapter 27 of
NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 50-2020 are incorporated by
reference, have been deemed copyright protected, and are
available for inspection at the Department of Health, Bureau of
Environmental Health, 4025 Esplanade Way, Tallahassee,
Florida 32311 or at the Department of State, R.A. Gray
Building, 500 South Bronough Street, Tallahassee, Florida

THE PERSON TO BE CONTACTED REGARDING THE
PROPOSED RULE IS: Bob Vincent,
Environmental
Administrator–Bureau of Environmental Health, 4052 Bald
Cypress Way, Bin A-08, Tallahassee, FL 32399-1742 or
[email protected]
THE FULL TEXT OF THE PROPOSED RULE IS:
64E-9.004 Operational Requirements.
(1) Water Quality – The water supply for all pools shall be
an approved potable water system or shall meet the
requirements for potable water systems by the submission from
the operator of annual bacteriological and chemical laboratory
reports to the county health department. Salt water sources are
exempt from the potable water chemical standards except for
iron and color requirements.
(a) through (c) No change.
(d) Chemical quality – Chemicals used in controlling the
quality of the pool water shall be tested and approved using the
NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 60-2021 60-2011, Drinking Water
Treatment Chemicals-Health Effects, April 16, 2021 dated May
2011, or Chapter 27 of NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 50-2020,
Equipment and Chemicals for Swimming Pools, Spas, Hot
Tubs, and Other Recreational Water Facilities, October 21,
2020, which is incorporated by reference in these rules and shall
be compatible with other accepted chemicals used in pools.
NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 60-2021 and Chapter 27 of
NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 50-2020 are incorporated by
reference, have been deemed copyright protected, and are
available for inspection at the Department of Health, Bureau of
Environmental Health, 4025 Esplanade Way, Tallahassee,
Florida 32311 or at the Department of State, R.A. Gray
Building, 500 South Bronough Street, Tallahassee, Florida

  1. The following parameters shall be adhered to for pool
    water treatment:
  2. pH – 7.0 7.2 to 7.8.
  3. Disinfection – Free chlorine residual shall be 1 milligram
    per liter (mg/L) to 4 10 mg/L, inclusive, in conventional
    swimming pools
    and 2 mg/L to 4 10 mg/L, inclusive, in all other
    type pools such as swim-up bars, spa-type pools and interactive
    water fountains; or available bromine residual shall be 1.5 mg/L
    to 6 10 mg/L, inclusive, in conventional swimming pools and 3
    mg/L to 6 10 mg/L, inclusive, in all other type pools. Except
    that, the following maximum disinfectant levels shall apply to
    indoor conventional swimming pools: 5 mg/L free chlorine or
    6 mg/L bromine.
  4. through 7. No change.
    (e) No change.
    (2) Manual addition of chemicals will be allowed under
    special conditions and requires that the pool be closed prior to
    addition and for at least 1 hour period after addition or a longer

through the use of an automated controller with chemical
sensing probes for disinfection and pH control.
(g) The maximum depth of the swim-up bar must be no
more than 54 inches.
(5) through (8) renumbered (6) through (9) No change.
(10) (9) Test kits are required to be on the premises of all
pools to determine free active chlorine and total chlorine using
N, N-Diethyl-p-Phenylenediamine (DPD), or available
bromine level, total alkalinity, calcium hardness, and pH.
NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 50-2020 50-2012 level 1 accuracycertified water quality test devices/kits or specific laboratory
analysis methods identified by the chemical product
manufacturer must be available to determine the concentration
in pool water of all NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 60-2021 60-2011
approved chemicals that are fed or added to a public pool, or
the chemical cannot be used. NSF/ANSI/CAN Standard 50-
2020 50-2012, Equipment and Chemicals for Swimming Pools,
Spas, Hot Tubs and Oother Recreational Water Facilities,
October 21, 2020 September 16, 2012, is hereby incorporated
by reference, has been deemed copyright protected, and is
available for review at the Department of Health, Bureau of
Environmental Health, 4025 Esplanade Way, Tallahassee,
Florida 32311 32399-1710 or at the Department of State, R.A.
Gray Building, 500 South Bronough Street, Tallahassee,
Florida 32308 32399-0250.

Similar Story U.S. Public Swimming Pool Codes👮

READ THE PROPOSAL IN ITS ENTIRETY HERE

By Rudy

Rudy Stankowitz is a 30-year veteran of the swimming pool industry and President/CEO of Aquatic Facility Training & Consultants

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