BOISE -- If you are noticing more and more people packing into your neighborhood pools, you can blame it on this heat. These triple-digit temperatures in the Treasure Valley are sticking around for at least a few more days, so you can expect the crowds at public pools to stay put too.
Most people would rather soak up the sun while in the water, and if you don't have a pool right in your backyard, having one just down the street is a great resource. But there are some important things you should know before and during your visit to a public pool.
City of Boise Parks and Recreation says: expect heavy crowds. They operate six different pools and some hit capacity on a regular basis, which can be anywhere from 125 to 500 people depending on the pool.
The city makes sure they're always fully staffed with lifeguards and that everyone is staying safe in the sun. Staff test the water's chemicals before they open at two-hour intervals throughout the day to make sure their pH levels are safe.
"We're checking those every day," City of Boise Aquatics Coordinator Denise Peterson said. "If the chlorine drops too low we may have to a call break and have maintenance mechanics come out and add chemicals or give the pool a little time to catch up."
One Boise mom told KTVB she brings her three kids to Fairmont City Pool about four times a week, and says she always feels safe and comfortable.
"You can just tell when you're in the water that it's clean. It looks clean and I think they do a great job," Jeannine Suter said. "Here, it's so hot. If we didn't have this I don't know what we would do."
Sometimes community pools can be notorious for "accidents." Protocol is to clear that body of water, make sure everything in the pool gets cleaned out, check the chemicals and give the water about 30 minutes to circulate before letting people back in.
Lifeguards encourage people to take breaks and drink plenty of water throughout the day. They also urge parents to go with their kids to the pool and swim alongside them - especially if their children aren't strong swimmers.
Boise Parks and Recreation asks people to call ahead to check capacity before coming down to the outdoor pools. That number is: (208) 608-7675.