PLANO, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) - Memorial Day Weekend marks the start of the summer pool season, but a nationwide lifeguard shortage is forcing some North Texas cities to cut their hours short.
There's just not enough staff to keep up with the demand.
"We are in a much better place than a lot of cities across the nation," said Steve Stoler with the City of Plano, which still needs to hire 40 to 50 more lifeguards for the season.
Because of the staffing issue, the city will have to reduce open swim hours at all of its facilities. The Jack Carter Outdoor Pool will also be forced to close one day a week.
"That really hurts us, but that's one day, one place where the staffing shortage really affects us," Stoler said.
Richardson, Arlington, and Mesquite will also operate their city pools on a modified schedule this summer because of the lifeguard shortage.
The City of Arlington typically has 160 lifeguards and cashiers to meet demand during peak pool season. As of mid-May, there were only 59 lifeguards on staff.
Several cities are continuing to offer incentives to attract more lifeguards, including higher pay and flexible hours. The City of Plano will even cover certification and uniform costs.
"I like being outside, I like the coworkers, and it's just a lot of fun," said Christina Wahl, one of the city's head lifeguards.
The City of Plano says its facilities will only be open if they have all the lifeguards they need to keep a watch on all guests.
"I guess it makes me feel good as a parent to know if they don't have the staff, they're not going to be open," said Plano resident Alana McMorrow, who brought her kids out to the Jack Carter facility on Memorial Day.
It appears the cities of Dallas and Fort Worth have enough lifeguards to maintain regular summer hours for their aquatic facilities.
It's a good idea to check the summer schedule with your municipality before heading out to any public pools.
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