Sport Singapore (SportSG) plans to install computer vision drowning detection systems (CVDDS) at all their public swimming complexes, starting with 11 public pools by April 2020.
Grace Fu, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY) says the implementation will boost public safety. The system uses a network of overhead infrared cameras, enabling early detection of possible drowning, working on a detection response time of 15 seconds which allows lifeguards to spot distressed swimmers more quickly.
The first pools to get the system this year are Bukit Batok, Jurong West and Our Tampines Hub, with another seven to follow by April 2020.
The system implementation follows a successful year-long trial at Hougang Swimming Complex.
An MCCY spokesperson says the system was assessed to have complied with international standards and had a low false-alarm rate.
Unconscious man saved
Last August, the system sounded after detecting that a 64-year-old man had sunk to the pool floor in an unconscious state, the MCCY spokesperson says. A lifeguard immediately rescued him from the pool, and successfully resuscitated him.
By 2020, the system will be implemented at 11 of the 26 public swimming pools listed on the ActiveSG website, and authorities added that there are plans to eventually roll out CVDDS to all its water facilities.
The CVDDS system is distributed locally by Maytronics Australia.