STOCKTON (CBS13) — Children are sneaking in to swim at a closed city pool in Stockton with no lifeguard around—a move that both has them breaking the law and putting their lives at risk.
Stockton city leaders say they can’t afford to keep the McKinley Park pool in south Stockton, where swimmers are cutting through locked gates.
Lifeguard Nathan McCullough points out the fence that has become a new entrance to the pool
“We just keep tying it with wires and stuff. It’s pretty good for now, but they’re probably going to cut it,” he said. “They’re mainly breaking in because were are not open enough hours.”
The hot weather and shortened pool hours have wannabe swimmers sneaking in through a hole in the fence when the pool is closed.
The YMCA of San Joaquin County runs the pool, and it fears tragedy could come from kids using the pool with no lifeguard.
Stockton Mayor Anthony Silva also has safety on his mind.
“It’s always a concern that a kid will climb a fence and maybe drown,” he said.
The YMCA says it doesn’t have the money to extend the hours beyond the three hours or less it’s open four days a week for recreational swimming. The group says it needs $20,000 to $25,000 to extend the pool hours.
The city says it can’t help either.
Parents say both sides should realize the importance of the pool in the low-income neighborhood.