Public Swimming Pools in Washoe County Can Open Friday
Certified Pool Operators allowed to self-open under Health District guidance

Media Release
For Immediate Release

Contact: Scott Oxarart
775.328.2414 or 775.276.1021

UPDATE 5/28: The Governor's Office has released the newest directive. See more about pools in Section 29 here.


Reno, Nev. May 27, 2020. The Washoe County Health District (WCHD) is allowing public pools to reopen Friday May 29, 2020, under the Governor’s guidance to enter Phase 2 of the state’s Nevada United: Roadmap to Recovery reopening plan, upon completion and submission of a self-opening checklist.

Under the governor’s guidance, swimming pools and aquatic facilities may open on Friday at 50 percent capacity. Locker rooms at these facilities and hot tubs must remain closed. Masks or face coverings should be worn by all employees except lifeguards. Masks or face coverings are not a requirement for the public, and are not advised in the water, but the Health District urges everyone to wear them in public and practice social distancing to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our community.

The Health District’s Environmental Health Services division, which permits all public swimming pools and aquatic facilities in Washoe County, is allowing aquatic facilities to self-open on Friday as long as the following objectives are met by each facility’s Certified Pool Operator, which is a position each facility must have in order to operate to the public. Those objectives are:

  • Occupancy, as set by the fire marshal, must not exceed 50%
  • Water chemistry must be tested and deemed safe for use
  • Pool chemicals must be stored safely
  • Lifeguards must be properly trained, and their safety equipment must be made available
  • Minimum of 2 days of continuous chemical circulation and stabilization prior to allowing bathers in the pool
  • Other health and safety requirements

The checklist can be found here must be submitted to the Health District via email at or fax at 775-328-6176 two days before opening. Certified Pool Operators must be certified by the National Swimming Pool Foundation – more information can be found here.

The Washoe County Health District has modified normal operations to respond to the COVID-19 public health crisis in Washoe County. In normal circumstances, the Health District would conduct these routine inspections before a pool is opened for the season.

The Health District is allowing this flexibility to expedite self-opening, recognizing the responsibility that the facilities and Certified Pool Operators have to maintain the safety of their guests. The Health District will resume routine inspections this year to ensure compliance with state and local regulations.

For more information, see our Public Pools and Spas webpage.


The Washoe County Health District is nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board and has jurisdiction over all public health matters in Reno, Sparks, and Washoe County through the policy-making Washoe County District Board of Health. The District consists of five divisions: Administrative Health Services, Air Quality Management, Community and Clinical Health Services, Environmental Health Services and Epidemiology & Public Health Preparedness. More info can be found here.  

Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »
Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »