Mass. seeks pool safety steps after drowning probe

April 20, 2012 - 4:25 PM

FALL RIVER, Mass. (AP) — Massachusetts officials say they will not be opening slides at state-run pools this summer following a drowning.

The decision stems from a 10-month review of policies and procedures that began after the June drowning of a 36-year-old woman in a Fall River swimming pool. Marie Joseph's body went unnoticed at the bottom of the murky pool for two days.

Department of Conservation and Recreation Commissioner Edward Lambert says while the pool's slide did not appear to be a direct factor in the death, the state will close the slides until a national safety study is completed.

The department is also recommending creation of a full-time aquatics division and the hiring of 20 additional lifeguards at state pools.

Lambert says the review pointed to an "inadequate approach to pool management" in the past.