How to Calculate Bather Load

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Put too many people into a pool and someone could get hurt. Not only would the water displace, but a swimmer could get trapped under a wall of people. So state and local governments set bather load, the maximum amount of people allowed into a public pool at once. And each municipality calculates bather load differently.

Calculate the Max Amount of Swimmers

To calculate bather load in your area, you'll need to search state, county and local government websites and call or email representatives, if necessary. The Department of Health usually enforces bather load. But you can use the following formula as a general rule. Get the square footage of the shallow end, defined as any water under 5 feet deep. Then get the square footage of water that's any deeper, subtracting 300 square feet for every diving board. Divide the shallow-end footage by 15 bathers allowed and divide the deep end by 20 bathers allowed. Add those two numbers and you have your bather load.


About the Author

Christopher Michael began writing in 2010 for He received a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Writing sports and travel articles helps support his professional baseball career, which has taken him to 49 states, five continents and four oceans.

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