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Local pools, spray parks waiting on green light from health officials to reopen

Posted at 5:36 AM, May 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-27 08:36:04-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Triple digit temperatures have made their way to Kern County, and while local public pools and spray parks remain closed, people are still looking for ways to cool down.

Many residents have reached out to the Department of Recreation and Parks to find out when Bakersfield’s 10 spray parks might be reopening.

“We get calls and emails. But we’re waiting for guidance from the county and state health departments," Dianne Hoover, the director of the department, said.

Health officials now are weighing in on the risk of getting infected through water. Previous research from the University of Arizona shows that coronavirus can survive for a period of time in tap water.

However, CDC officials say there is no evidence that the virus can spread to people through treated water in pools, hot tubs, spas, or water play areas.

The Kern County Department of Recreation and Parks says they're still waiting for the green light from public health.

“It is not our decision. We are still not able to open. We are waiting on the guidance... The city is really not interested in breaking any of those guidelines," Dianne said.

Experts say the danger is not necessarily the water, but the people who will be around you, as the biggest risk of catching the virus comes from not practicing social distancing.

Some good news? The city says as soon as they get the OK to advance into phase three, spray parks could open as soon as one day later.

“If we get the OK for pools to open, we would still have to hire lifeguards and managers and different staff to staff the pools, so it wouldn’t be an overnight thing. With the spray parks, if we get the ok, we’re able to open those pretty quickly," Dianne said.