The benefits of being a PHTA CPO® Qualified Operative
Over 14 years ago, when we first moved to Cyprus, it became obvious that there was no pool water care regulation or standard in place.
That wouldn’t have mattered much to us. Except like many people, we started renting out our home and helping friends rent theirs. We began to research the liabilities which fell upon the owner of a property with a pool. It was scary stuff. Especially when Cyprus joined the EU and signed up to its’ standards! Just check out this link
It gives us great pride to see so many individuals and companies, island-wide on Cyprus, proudly displaying the PHTA CPO logo on their vans, merchandise and clothing!
So, with the mission of setting up a pool maintenance company, to work alongside our holiday rentals business, we trawled the internet to find out what standards of pool water care existed worldwide. Those that are recognized and respected across Europe and how to learn about them.
The result was that, early in 2004, we put our money where our mission was and went to Colorado USA. Taking our then pools manager with us, and trained to be PHTA CPO operators. Then, we brought the PHTA representatives here to Cyprus a few times over the following 3 year period. Until we were able to sufficiently prove our credentials to take the PHTA CPI instructors exam. Which our director, Tony, successfully completed.
The PHTA (Pool & Hot Tub Alliance) formerly known as NSPF (National Swimming Pool Foundation), was set up in the early 60s. Working towards what is now their mission statement; ie “Keeping Pools Safer; Keeping Pools Open”. By the 70s, one of the founding directors had evolved his own perfected, tested, aquatic training plan. This formed the CPO training course and qualification The ‘Certified Pool Operators’ qualification. Now recognized worldwide and known as the standard across Europe. The PHTA CPO ‘qualification’’ is taught by us across Europe. Giving swimmers the confidence to know that the CPO engineer cleaning their pool is trained to the highest of standards. And, is governed by a Code of Conduct and Practice to which they must perform. Or lose their qualification.
Lasting 5 years, and renewable with a refresher exam, the PHTA CPO course is 18-20 hours of training and exams, over a 2 day period.
Trained by a qualified and licensed PHTA CPI (certified pool instructor ) – of which Tony Bell, Owner and Director of The Pool People, is the first one on the island. Tony is the man who brought this huge step forward in pool care. Since then, one of the original PHTA CPOs trained by Tony has also qualified to be a CPI. A testament to the strength of the course and the importance of the qualification. Remember, the EU Regulation, ESN15288-2, states that the owner of a facility/home with a pool, is entirely liable for the cleanliness of the water in that facility/pool. And, for checking the qualifications of the person cleaning it.
It’s been an interesting and not uneventful 13 years. Generally raising awareness of pool care and the reasons it is so very important. But also overcoming the prejudices of the ‘’one-man-band’’ pool cleaners. Who see cleaning pools as “easy money with a test kit in hand”. The care of pool water and the repercussions of not caring for pool water properly are many and costly. Both in terms of the lives of swimmers and the costs of running pools over the long term.
WHAT SHOULD YOU EXPECT FROM AN PHTA CPO OPERATOR?
The feeling of pride referred to at the start of this editorial, is in seeing so how the people in Cyprus have welcomed the PHTA (Pool & Hot Tub Alliance) CPO course and how many have trained to ensure they are indeed, keeping up the standards. It’s very satisfying to see recognition for years of hard work in PHTA CPO’d people travelling the island and cleaning pools.
Some people think we are crazy for pushing this course, feeling that the more people who are qualified, the more people work against us – but that’s where they’ve missed the point completely: The more qualified PHTA CPO operators there are working on this beautiful island, the cleaner and therefore safer, more swimming pools are – for our family as well as theirs/ yours!
So, if you are thinking of taking on a new pool cleaner, choose a PHTA CPO qualified one and know your pool will be cleaned as it should be, keeping your pool safer and open, for longer!