For holidaymakers looking for a spot of luxury, one of the growing attractions is to stay at a hotel or holiday home offering facilities that have hot tubs in them, as this is a great added value item for people to enjoy! The British and Irish Spa and Hot Tub Association (BISHTA) has been concerned to know that as the number of hot tubs in hotel and holiday homes has increased, the knowledge about water treatment safety regimes may be inconsistent.

BISHTA is keen to ensure that hotel and holiday home providers are aware that there is a requirement to safeguard their guests where these facilities are provided in holiday accommodation. A hot tub is a self-contained spa pool designed for domestic use in somebody’s home.  Where it is used in a holiday lodge, or adjacent to a single bedroom, that is business use of a domestic hot tub. Hotels should have a commercial spa, these provide a form of continuous disinfectant feed, and are the requirement, if the accommodation is more than one bedroom sharing the spa pool or, if there is a commercial spa adjacent to a swimming pool for example.  

BISHTA has created a new membership category (Associate Member) for holiday venues with hot tubs to ensure they can benefit from the advice and training offered to BISHTA members.

BISHTA is the trade association for the British and Irish spa and hot tub industry; BISHTA is the only Trade Association anywhere in Europe totally dedicated to solely representing the Spa and Hot Tub Industry, with published Standards.

 The key message from BISHTA has always been “Promoting Safe Spa Water”.  By providing water hygiene management training, both BISHTA and its members can ensure that the rest of the industry is aware of their responsibilities for maintaining hot tub water, with an appropriate level of sanitiser (bromine, chlorine or PHMB) to provide healthy spa water and reduce to a minimum, the risk of having the legionella bacteria developing into the potential danger of Legionnaires Disease. 

 BISHTA’s Technical Adviser Howard Gosling commented: “BISHTA estimates there are between 80,000 – 100,000 hot tubs and swim spas in the British Isles and given the isolated number of issues each year, this demonstrates that by following the simple rules needed for water hygiene management that hot tubs can be very safe to maintain and use”.

Any business providing hot tub/commercial spa facilities to the public should follow the advice of the Health Protection Agency and the Health and Safety Executive to ensure that hot tubs/commercial spas for public use are adequately maintained.  This advice is contained within a range of publications, businesses with premises that provide hot tub/commercial spa facilities to the public should have a copy of these publications and should also carry out a risk assessment, in accordance with BS 8580, this should be reviewed annually.

Through the vigilance of BISHTA and its members, customers can be sure that they are receiving the correct advice on how to safely maintain their hot tubs and swim spas to provide maximum enjoyment.  BISHTA would strongly urge customers to buy from BISHTA members, as companies that are not members of BISHTA may not be suitably trained in water hygiene management and sadly, in some cases, the products being sold by non-members are not always of a suitable quality. 

 BISHTA welcomes applications for membership from anyone involved in manufacturing, importing, distributing, retailing or utilising hot tubs in a business setting.  An approved Water Training course is a pre-requisite for BISHTA Membership.

 BISHTA works alongside The Swimming Pool and Allied Trades Association (SPATA); both trade associations offer advice and guidance, providing resources for customers along with an easy to use ‘Find a Memberpostcode search facility.

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