Caution Closes HPER Pool

As a precaution against possible contamination, the College of Health closed its pool in the HPER complex Monday morning.

This came as a result of a swimming class student who reported possibly having been infected with a parasite called cryptosporidium. The parasite causes cramping, abdominal pain and watery diarrhea, said Michele Johnson, assistant director of the University of Utah’s Environmental Health and Safety department

There is nothing wrong with the U’s water, said College of Health Dean John Dunn, but the student may have contaminated it. While Dunn regrets the inconvenience to the pool’s patrons, he wants to handle the situation conservatively, making sure there’s no danger of contamination.

“We’re extremely environmental- and safety conscious,” Dunn said. “We want to make sure we follow appropriate procedures.”

While closed, the pool is being hyperchlorinated. Johnson doesn’t know when the pool will reopen, but hopes that will happen within 48 hours, she said Monday afternoon. Environmental health is working with the Salt Lake Valley Health Department, which covers county health, rather than with the state Department of Health, which was closed Monday in observance of Veterans Day.