Chlorine shortage jeopardizes swimming this summer

Published: May. 5, 2021 at 8:58 PM CDT
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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - Ever since one of the largest pool supply companies caught on fire last year, chlorine, specifically chlorine tablets have been in short supply.

“Bio Lab supplies about 40% of the chlorine for the United States and so they lost their supplies, as well as, their ingredient to make new supply,” said Island Pool and Spa Owner Jaime Smidt.

Luckily Island Pool and Spa in Grand Island has been stocking up, so they don’t run out.

“We stayed ahead of the game and we planned accordingly,” Smidt said. “I made sure to get our supplies when we did, so we’re ok but looking ahead, I’m a little worried of what’s to come.”

Last year pool and spa sales in the Tri-Cities were booming like never before, so with more people being pool owners this year, they fear their supply won’t last during the summer.

“I thought that this year may be a little better and it’s definitely not, this year is harder to get than last year was for pools and hot-tubs,” Smidt said.

With Island Oasis Water Park, Lincoln pool, wading pools and splash park in Grand Island expected to open on Memorial Day, the Parks and Recreation Department said they’re not worried about the shortage as of right now.

“Hopefully we don’t have an issue,” Director Todd McCoy said. “We buy it straight from a supplier, so hopefully keep our fingers crossed that won’t be an issue for us.”

However if they can’t get their hands on chlorine tablets, this could jeopardize keeping the splash pads and splash park open.

“Most of the wading pools are probably still tablets, there’s one I think that is a tablet but most of them are liquid now,” McCoy said.

Despite the threat of a shortage, Mccoy said they’re excited to open the pools back up to the public.

“Wave pools were closed last year. Water park was closed. They’ve been kind of sitting there for two years. It’s going to take a little extra work to get it together this year, get staff hired and get ready for the summer,” McCoy said.

The Parks and Recreation Department is in need of lifeguards and other workers this summer. For more information call the department at (308) 389-0290 or apply online.

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