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City pools fully staffed this year to help people beat the heat

Published: Jun. 21, 2022 at 5:22 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - A dip in the pool is one of the few ways people can beat the heat. As temperatures continue to rise in Eastern Iowa, Cedar Rapids City officials say it’s times like these that life guards and other pool staff are on high alert for things like heat exhaustion, and dehydration, especially among younger swimmers.

Rachel Larson is one avid swimmer who comes to Noelridge Pool at least five days a week in the summer. When temperatures reach over 95, she’s especially eager to get in her laps.

“I mean it’s the best way to handle this heat,” said Larson. “Today on a hot day, you can swim, get out, stay under the shade, and then jump back in and it just helps you get through a hot day.”

Cedar Rapids Aquatics Program Supervisor, Brain Ruffles says their staff is prepared to accommodate larger crowds on hotter days. Even the pool-cleaning process can be changed in order to keep swimmers safe.

“We generally stick to the same process because it’s set for that maximum usage, but in the event that we do have a crazy day and something is a little bit off, then we might bring in additional help,” said Ruffles.

With a pool capacity of 15 hundred, he says they rarely reach maximum and have only ever had to turn people away once several years ago.

“If we get to capacity, what we would do is we would try to direct them to one of the other city pools at first, and then just also explain to them that it’s a one in, one out type situation,” said Ruffles.

But when there’s limited options to stay cool, Ruffles says it’s a definite possibility.

“Otherwise you’re just going to be staying at home in the air conditioning and summer is all about getting out and enjoying summer because we have such a long winter,” said Larson.

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