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Neff Park pool reopens after staffers test negative for COVID-19

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published July 21, 2020

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GROSSE POINTE CITY — The Neff Park pool in Grosse Pointe City reopened July 17 after being closed for about a week because a lifeguard self-reported a positive COVID-19 test on July 9.

City Manager Pete Dame said by email that all staffers who might have been exposed to the lifeguard were required to self-quarantine and be retested for COVID-19; they have all since tested negative for the virus. Dame said the Wayne County Health Department would only allow the pool to reopen after all employees had been tested and found not to have COVID-19.

“These negative COVID-19 test results are directly attributed to the number of protocols and precautions that the City has in place,” a statement on the City’s website reads, in part. “As a result, these precautions will be continued by limiting the number of commonly touched surfaces, the wearing of masks by all staff except for when in the guard chair, and maintaining proper social distancing among the staff and users.”

Drinking fountains and bathhouse locker rooms remain closed, and no chairs or diving boards are available for swimmers. However, outdoor pool deck showers can be used.

“The City’s Neff Park facilities have been deep cleaned and sanitized and the bathrooms reopened,” Dame said via email.

The pool is only open for resident use, and residents can sign up for one of four daily swimming slots online or by calling the City Parks and Recreation Department at (313) 343-5257. Because officials need to limit the number of pool users, each swimmer in a family must register. Swimmers can sign up as early as five days in advance and can only reserve one time period per day.

City officials say swimmers have 30 minutes from the start of their time period to sign in. After 30 minutes, walk-ins and swimmers from a previous time slot are allowed to use the pool, up to the maximum of 100 at one time. The pool and deck are cleaned and sanitized between time slots.

After the lifeguard reported the positive COVID-19 test, City residents who signed up to use the pool between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. July 7 were contacted, and anyone who was using pool facilities during that time period was advised to watch for symptoms, Dame said. Anyone who begins to feel ill or show COVID-19 symptoms is asked to get tested and contact their physician.

For swim slot reservations and updates on the park and pool, visit grossepointecity.org.

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