Cessnock and Branxton pools will open for the 2020/21 season this Saturday at 7am, with COVID-19 regulations in place.
While these local pools are hugely popular in the warmer months, Cessnock City Council has had to introduce some restrictions to ensure compliance with the Public Health Order.
The pools will have amended operating hours until at least December 31, open Monday to Friday 6am to 5pm, and 7am to 5pm on weekends.
The maximum capacity will be 60 people at Branxton Pool and 75 people at Cessnock Pool (excluding swimming club nights).
All patrons must observe 1.5m social distancing at all times (unless living in the same house); use hand sanitiser on entry and exit of the facility; scan in using the QR code on entry or manually sign in, and pay using EFTPOS or bring the correct change to reduce cash handling.
All high touch surfaces will be sanitised by pool staff every hour, and pools will be vacated daily between 12.45pm and 1.15pm to allow staff to do a thorough disinfectant clean of the amenities and high touch surfaces.
Following an announcement by the NSW Department of Education to cancel their swimming and water safety program, no school bookings will be approved for term four.
Council's general manager, Lotta Jackson said these measures are in place to keep both staff and the community safe during the 2020/21 pool season.
"We want to see the community enjoying our wonderful pool facilities over the warmer months, but it was important to put a COVID Safety Plan in place to ensure everyone's safety," she said.