The Guidelines for Safe Pool Operation (GSPO) have been developed by personnel from a wide range of groups, in conjunction with international best practice, to support Pool Operators with providing a safe swimming environment. The GSPO does not have any legal status, however relevant authorities may use this document for enforcement purposes.



The purpose of the GSPO is to ensure that all Pool Operators understand their responsibilities with regards to health and safety in swimming pools. Ultimately, the purpose of this document is to reduce drownings and other water related injury as far as is reasonably practicable.


As guidelines may periodically change or be updated, this document is provided in a soft copy format.


Swimming Pool Classification

For the purpose of these guidelines, 6 (six) types of Swimming facilities have been identified. It is important that the Pool Operator understands which category of pool they operate, and which guidelines are applicable to their facility. Below there is a description of each type of swimming pool. If the Pool Operator is still unsure, further guidance can be provided by contacting Royal Life Saving Bahrain.

Type A

Waterparks and Hotel Pools

Waterparks are large aquatic amusement parks. Features at Waterparks will vary, although common attractions include Lazy Rivers, Wave Pools, Splash decks, Slides and Flumes. Hotel Pools are any pools within a building or facility that has a commercial registration as a hotel with the BTEA and are rated five or four star.
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Type B

Public Pools

Public Pools are facilities where any members of the public can pay to swim during clearly defined operating hours. These pools may also be found in social or private members clubs.
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Type C

Private Hire Pools

Private Hire Pools are facilities that are licenced to rent the swimming pool for private hire. They are not open to the public for general use, and only operate when hired by an individual or group.
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Type D

School Pools

School Pools are any swimming pool within an educational establishment. This may include but is not limited to schools, colleges and universities.
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Type E

Residential Pools

Residential Swimming Pools are swimming pools that are within furnished and non furnished apartment buildings or compounds that are provided to residents for shared use. They are also found in three star hotels.
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Type F

Private Home Pools

Private Home Pools are private swimming pools within a personal residence. Typically found in villas, they are a variety of sizes and may include features such as spa pools. They do not have shared use.
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