Village of Orland Park Aquatic Center Earns Five Star Safety Rating

Village of Orland Park Aquatic Center Earns Five Star Safety Rating
Posted on 06/24/2015

The Village of Orland Park Centennial Park Aquatic Center earned a five-star safety rating during its first risk management audit of the season in mid-June. The Starfish Aquatics Institute awarded Orland Park’s village water park the highest rating possible following an unannounced risk management audit by the national non-profit water safety organization.

“Centennial Park Aquatic Center’s main priority is everyone’s safety,” said Mayor Dan McLaughlin. “Being awarded five stars by a national safety organization shows how hard the village’s pool staff works to keep everyone safe,” he said.

Starfish Aquatics Institute is one of the largest lifeguard, swim instructor and pool operator certifying agencies in the United States. The institute offers state of the art training courses and provides risk management services for the aquatic industry.

Swimming facilities are tested on a surprise basis with the auditor hiding outside of the facility, secretly videotaping the lifeguards. The auditor then selects guards, team leaders and squad leaders to respond to mock emergency drills while evaluating and grading the guards’ performances during the activities. The activities included a spinal review, first aid, a CPR review, and an unresponsive drowning victim protocol.

The auditor included many positive comments in the safety report, including, “Great team communication!” and “Rescuers work as an energetic, confident, well-coordinated team and everyone appears to know their role.”

Management staff on duty included Maggie Foley, Logan Nootbaar, Katie Veldman, and Kyle Pikula. Staffers who participated in the audit included Paul Fitzpatrick, Connor Mallon, Michelle Rubino, Teresa Boline, Matt Dalton, Lauren Olson, Erik Muellershoen, Beth Melaniphy, Dovydas Paskevicius, Jimmy Amedeo, Margaret Mallon, Emily Tunney, Carly Krull, Caitlin Shanahan, Rachel Olchowka, Jack Lebert, Ellyse Henkle, Emily Makina, Cody Torres, Tiffany Kasternakis, Alex Schuetz, and Aaron Tompkins.

“The staff at Centennial Park Aquatic Center work and train all season to ensure everyone’s safety,” said Trustee Pat Gira, chair of the village’s Recreation and Parks Committee. “We are really proud of them,” she added.

Swimming facilities are tested on a surprise basis with the auditor hiding outside of the facility, secretly videotaping the lifeguards.

The auditor evaluates and grades the guards’ performances while the guards supervise the pool from their chairs. On a five-star scale, the auditor rates the facility on various aspects. They rating includes studies on how often the guards’ heads turn, scanning the pool from left, center and right, rotation changes and the guards’ hydration and shade. The auditor’s presence is announced once the audit is completed. The auditor also selects guards, team leaders and squad leaders to respond to mock emergency drills.

The village’s Centennial Park Aquatic Center is located at 15600 West Avenue in Orland Park. Daily hours until September 6 are 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. Resident fees are $7 and $14 for non-residents.

Further information is available with the Village of Orland Park Recreation Department at 708/403-PARK.