Back in my lifeguarding days, I started every season with a message to our pool patrons: "We don't swim in your toilet, please don't pee in our pool." Turns out 17% of Americans didn't listen. Gross!
According to a survey taken by the Water Quality and Health Council, 17% of Americans—that's roughly 1 in 6— admit that they've peed in a public pool. Perhaps these people weren't terrified into holding it by a lifeguard who told them that the water would turn bright purple and everyone would know if they peed while swimming. Or, perhaps, the fact that 78% of all swimmers believed that their fellow pool patrons were using the water as a giant toilet led 1 in 6 adults down F-It Highway, thinking that they weren't alone in their unsanitary habits.
Of course, chlorine helps kill off some of the germs spread by sneezing, spitting, urinating, and sweating in the pool, but it's probably best to follow the CDC's recommendations and avoid swallowing any pool water. Or maybe, in light of such nasty revelations, we should all just switch the ol' lifeguard standby around and start swimming in our toilets instead. At least we'd know who was peeing in the water.