CPSC Approves Extension On Unblockable Drains
Apr 12, 2012
|CPSC Approves Unblockable Extension|
|The Consumer Product Safety Commission is extending by one year the deadline |
for retrofitting unblockable drains in public pools.
In 2010, the CPSC determined that an unblockable drain cover could be installed
over a smaller sump to comply with the Virginia Graeme Baker Act. But last
September, the group reversed itself, requiring that the sumps also meet certain
dimensional and flow criteria. The CPSC mandated retrofits on those drains that
fell out of the unblockable category, and set a deadline of May 28, 2012 for
compliance. Officials said a later date could be considered based on public comments.
Last week, staff recommended to the four sitting Commissioners that the deadline
be extended to May 23, 2013, the Thursday before Memorial Day.
“If a pool operator installed an unblockable drain system, staff believes it is
reasonable to allow them time to budget and plan for the expenditure required to
install a secondary anti-entrapment system,” said a staff memo to commissioners.
On April 5, the ruling passed 3-1, with the dissenting vote coming from CPSC
Chairman Inez Tenenbaum. The two Republican Commissioners who opposed last
year’s switch — Anne Northup and Nancy Nord — voted for the extension, as did
Robert Adler, a Democrat who had called for more exploration on the deadline.
“Anne is more than happy with this outcome,” said Northup’s spokesman, Mark
Fellin. “She’s glad that the Commission chose to move in this direction, and she’s
hopeful that this will help the industry in this change of the interpretation.”
CPSC stated that this extension would apply only to those facilities affected by
the unblockable-drain change, and that enforcement will continue uninterrupted
on all other public pools and spas.
Though there have been many comments urging CPSC to go back to its original
unblockable-drain definition, no signs indicate that a reconsideration will take place.