A SWIMMER who has been using a pool in Tadley for more than a decade has warned there is going to be “a serious incident” at the leisure centre if the water temperature is not brought down from “spa levels”.

Mark Payne, who has been using Tadley Health and Fitness Centre for near 14 years, claimed the water temperature level at the pool is consistently kept above 30 degrees which is not recommended by the Pool Water Treatment Advisory Group (PWTAG).

Mr Payne, 35, has been measuring the Tadley pool water temperature for the past three years, ever since he started noticing the “dangerous” trend.

He said the temperature is often kept at 32 and 33 degrees, with sometimes touching 34 degrees.

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According to PWTAG, the recommended temperature for competitive and fitness swimming is 26-28 degrees, leisure waters activity is 28-30 degrees, children's teaching is 29-31 degrees and swimming for babies, young children, disabled and infirm is 30-32 degrees.

“I know when they have swimming lessons, they run the water a bit hotter. Most pools that have such sessions would run it at 29 degrees, not 30. But that is still acceptable,” he said.

“But there was a summer three years ago when it was very hot, and the pool was really hot. When I told the lifeguards, they said it was not. So I went out and bought a thermometer and measured it. It was 32 degrees. Since then, I've recorded temperatures every time I swam. Because I wanted to make sure if I was being crazy or was it actually too indifferent.”

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Mr Payne also sent a 10-month spreadsheet of water temperatures at the pool showing the readings regularly touching 34 degrees, which he said the centre did not dispute.

But the swimmer said no action has been taken yet.

Mr Payne said the higher temperature poses an increased risk of death at the pool.

“There are recorded cases of Olympic athletes, who are some of the fittest people, dying in waters over 30 degrees. It is an added strain on the cardiovascular system, reduces oxidative absorb and increase the likelihood of heart attacks, stroke fainting drowning.

“I've no doubt that at some point, there's going to be a serious incident at that pool because someone's going to over-exert themselves in the hot water.

“There's the obvious health and safety issues here and the energy cost to heat that much water by just one degree is massive. It's clear some of these recent changes causing uproar and petitions etc are due to attempting to cut cost. So why do they continue to waste so much on energy?”

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A spokesperson for the pool acknowledged that the pool temperature is kept above 30 degrees.

Contract manager for Basingstoke and Deane Community Leisure Trust Guy Baber said: “The set temperature for the swimming pool at Tadley Health & Fitness Centre is 30 degrees centigrade. This was chosen following a trial period where we operated at 29 degrees. Due to a number of complaints from customers telling us the water was too cold, we amended that setting.

“However, we are aware of an issue around temperature controls at the centre. This is due to the automatic setting which controls temperatures failing to function correctly, resulting in the centre having to use the manual mode. This is causing temporary fluctuations in water temperature, which have on occasion caused it to increase above the set-point. We are currently working towards finding a permanent solution with our appointed contractors.”