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Water recreation program

Water recreation program

Swimming pool and spa permits, guidelines and resources

Before making changes to your pool to comply with the new Federal requirements you will need to go through plan review. Submit a Water Recreation Facility Plan Review Application, renovation fee and applicable information specified in the Plan Review Checklist for New Federal Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Requirements to Public Health to start the review process.

There are a number of resources available to help you understand these new requirements. Several guidance documents developed by Washington State Department of Health and other resources are listed in related resources under Virginia Graeme Baker Act.

Additional Water Recreation information

2022 Splash! Newsletter

  • Summer is around the corner
  • Preparing the pool facility to open
  • Expect continued chlorine, chemical and equipment shortages in 2022
  • Report all drownings, non-fatal drownings, serious injuries, and illness to the Health Department
  • Keeping your pool from going green
  • Conditions that require actions by your facility to keep your pool safe and avoid a closure plus reinspection by Public Health
  • Water Quality Tables

2021 Splash! Newsletter

  • Steps to take before reopening your pool or spa
  • VGB compliance plan review and drain cover replacement
  • Making other pool changes
  • Have a safe year at your pool
  • Conditions that require actions by your facility to keep your pool safe and avoid a closure plus reinspection by Public Health

2020 Splash! Newsletter

  • Maintenance
  • Renovation/equipment replacement
  • Is your pool and/or spa Virginia Graeme Baker (VGB) compliant?
  • Staff training

2019 Splash! Newsletter

  • Know when to close your pool
  • Report drownings, near drowings and injuries to Health Dept.
  • Renovating and remodling requirements
  • Online portal services
  • Operating pool equipment, training and water quality logs
  • Water quality standards

2018 Splash! Newsletter

  • Pool and spa contact information required
  • Reporting requirements for injuries and illnesses
  • VGB compliance plan review and drain cover replacement
  • And more...

2017 Splash! Newsletter

  • Planning a pool party to open the apartment or condo pool this summer?
  • Tips to keep your pool safe and avoid health department closure/re-inspection fees
  • Tips for preparing for seasonal pool openings
  • And more...

2016 Splash! Newsletter

  • Pool operating permits
  • Understanding when you need to close your pool
  • Promoting a safer summer swimming season
  • And more...

Plan review process and service fees Forms and documentation Posters and guidelines Barriers compliance Flood preparedness Illness transmission from pool use External links

When pool and spa inspections are performed by Public Health

Two routine inspections are done each year. Tests of pool water for free chlorine residual, pH, alkalinity and when necessary cyanuric acid are done at each inspection. The routine inspections also include a safety evaluation of the walking surfaces, access doors and fences, recirculation equipment, safety and emergency equipment.

A Plan Review is required of all public and semi-public pools and spas prior to their construction, alteration or renovation. All plans are reviewed to ensure compliance with the King County Board of Health, Title 14 and Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 246-260, (WAC) 246-262 and The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act.


Phone hours:

  • Mon. Wed. Fri: 8 am to 3 pm
  • Tues. and Thurs: 10:30 am to 3 pm

To request inspection reports for a pool, please call us and include the facility name and address of where the pool is located.

Mailing address:

Water Recreation Program
Environmental Health Division
401 - 5th Ave, Suite 1100
Seattle, WA 98104

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