By Colin MacGillivray
SWIMMING pools in Seymour and Tallarook are in the Mitchell Shire spotlight after council moved to rectify potential safety issues at both locations.
The water slide at Tallarook Outdoor Pool will be replaced after failing a safety audit, while diving blocks were removed from Seymour War Memorial Outdoor Pool.
Mitchell Shire Council acting chief executive Laurie Ellis said both decisions were made with community safety in mind.
Mr Ellis said a pump located below the water slide at the Tallarook pool was identified as a potential entrapment risk.
“[The pump] is used to circulate water to the slide and around the pool,” he said.
“An external audit in 2021 identified … [a risk that] hair could get caught in the pump when people land in the water.
“Replacement works require significant modification within the pool and the plant room to ensure the new slide and all equipment meet safety standards. These works need to be undertaken outside the pool season.
“Council encourages community members to visit the Engaging Mitchell website to have their say on the proposed design of the new slide.”
Council officers estimated a new slide and pump setup similar to one shown in concept designs would be about $100,000, including the cost of removing the old slide.
Mr Ellis said the diving blocks at the Seymour pool were also removed because they failed to meet safety requirements.
“The diving blocks were removed due to age and lack of compliance with safety standards,” he said.
“Additional work would need to be undertaken to the concourse around the pool to accommodate new compliant diving blocks.”
Some members of the Seymour community expressed disappointment at the decision not to replace the diving blocks.
A petition started by Seymour resident Bobbie Pepper called for council to replace the blocks instead of removing them entirely.
Ms Pepper’s petition had more than 180 signatures as of yesterday afternoon.
“It has come to light that these diving blocks were unsafe and needed to be removed which is not what this petition is about,” she said.
“I’ve created this petition to help with my budget submission to at least replace the blocks as they were used for various different uses.
“Please help me in making our voices heard, by signing the petition you are helping the community be safe and bringing enjoyment back into our summertime.”
People can provide feedback on plans for a new slide at the Tallarook pool by Engaging Mitchell Shire.
Ms Pepper’s petition can be viewed online.