Report: Most swimming pools and hot tubs contain urine

A recent 'Today' show investigation has found that most pools and hot tubs contain some amounts of urine.

NBC correspondent Jeff Rossen took water samples from a kiddie pool, a water park wave pool, three hotel pools, and two hot tubs; all but one tested positive for the substance.

These results are in line with a recent study out of Canada which found that a "220,000-gallon, commercial-size swimming pool contained almost 20 gallons of urine," notes NPR.

Meanwhile, a typical pool at someone's home was estimated to have about two gallons of the substance. Researchers in the Canadian study also reportedly found that hot tubs were some of the worst offenders, with one site containing three times more urine than the poorest performing swimming pool.

Related: Take a look at dry drowning signs:

Symptoms of dry drowning
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Symptoms of dry drowning


"Persistent coughing or coughing associated with increased work of breathing" should be brought to the attention of a medical personnel -- if not immediately -- said

Shallow breathing and trouble breathing

The child will be gasping or coughing for air. He or she may feel like they can't catch their breath

Nausea and/or vomiting 

Vomiting can sometimes be triggered by persistent coughing. It's also a "sign of stress from the body as a result of the inflammation and sometimes a lack of oxygen," said pediatrician Kathleen Berchelmann to

Confusion and exhaustion 

An enhanced state of confusion or exhaustion may be a result of the brain's lack of oxygen. 

Don't just put your child down for a nap -- be wary of these symptoms. 

Chest pain

Chest pain could be associated with extreme coughing or vomiting. 


NPR quotes environmental engineer Ernest Blatchley III as saying, "I think you can assume that if people are using your pool, they're peeing in it."

Aside from the psychological factors that are involved, there can be real consequences, with Dr. John Torres, a medical correspondent for NBC, telling Rossen, "There are some health risks because when that urine mixes with the chlorine, it makes two chemicals, cyanogen chloride and trichloramine. Those chemicals can irritate your eyes, they can irritate your lungs, they can irritate your skin."

Despite the risks, experts suggest that people continue to swim for the exercise benefits but advise against any urination in the pool.

Related: Pool floats everyone should own this summer

Adorable Pool Floats
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