Gov. Andy Beshear released guidelines Tuesday for reopening public pools and for gatherings of 50 or fewer people, both of which are able to resume June 29.
The state’s Healthy at Work requirements for public swimming and bathing facilities applies to public beaches and public pool facilities, including those used for swimming, wading, wave, competition, diving, spray, spa, therapeutic, hydrotherapy, whirlpool and water slides. It does not apply to private, single-family residences where the intended use is for the owner and guests.
The guidelines state that the maximum number of people allowed in both a pool and a facility should be determined by dividing the surface area by 36 square feet “to comply with social distancing requirements of 6 feet on all sides.”
Additionally, people who do not live in the same household must maintain at least 6 feet of distance from one another “any time individuals’ heads are above the water’s surface.”
Waiting rooms, saunas and steam rooms must remain closed, but showers and locker rooms can be used if they can be “routinely and adequately” cleaned and sanitized on a “frequent basis.”
Frequently touched surfaces must be disinfected every hour, including ladders and handrails.
On-duty lifeguards “shall not wear masks” because of the “safety hazard” it poses. Other employees must wear a face covering when within 6 feet of others, unless it jeopardizes their health or safety.
Facilities “may require” patrons to wear masks when outside of the water and within 6 feet of people they do not live with. Those who refuse to wear masks may be denied entry or asked to leave.
These rules also replace the requirements for aquatic centers and businesses that were able to reopen June 1.
Bowling Green Parks and Recreation Director Brent Belcher didn’t immediately respond Tuesday to a question regarding whether the Russell Sims Aquatic Center would reopen this summer.
As for groups of 50 or fewer, guidelines state that people must maintain 6 feet of distance from anyone who is not from their household. In addition, individuals must wear a mask when closer than 6 feet to someone they don’t live with.
The full list of requirements for public swimming and bathing facilities, along with gatherings of 50 or fewer is available at kycovid19.ky.gov.
In a news release Tuesday, Beshear announced 12,829 total coronavirus cases in Kentucky, 339 of which are probable and 203 of which are newly confirmed.
Seven newly confirmed virus-related deaths bring the state’s total to 512, two of which are considered probable. At least 3,431 people have recovered, 395 are hospitalized and 69 are in intensive care. At least 324,433 total people have been tested statewide, which is about 7.3 percent of the state’s 4.4 million population.
Meanwhile, Barren River District Health Department officials announced 1,968 total cases Tuesday, including 1,279 in Warren, 242 in Butler, 205 in Logan, 75 in Edmonson, 61 in Simpson, 62 in Barren, 36 in Hart and eight in Metcalfe. Of those, 1,326 people have reportedly recovered.
The virus-related death toll in the eight-county region remains at 50, including 13 in Butler, 11 in Edmonson, 10 in Warren, nine in Logan, three in Simpson and two in both Barren and Metcalfe.
There are at least 138 total coronavirus cases in Allen County, according to the Allen County Health Department, which is not part of the Barren River district.
Meanwhile, in the Barren River Area Development District’s 10-county region, state data showed 2,135 total cases Tuesday, including 1,288 in Warren, 245 in Butler, 201 in Logan, 137 in Allen, 68 in Edmonson, 67 in Barren, 59 in Simpson, 31 in both Monroe and Hart, and eight in Metcalfe.
Some daily totals may shift because of data being reported incorrectly. Additionally, numbers often differ between the state and local sources because of different reporting methods.
– Follow multimedia journalist Emily Zantow on Twitter @EmilyZantowNews or visit bgdaily news.com.