Swimming pool drownings and immersions represent the biggest cause of accidental death for young children in Australia – and most occur in private backyard swimming pools. Each State and Territory has its own set of pool fencing regulations and guidelines which are designed to reduce the risk of such accidents occurring. Making sure that your pool fencing complies with your state law and that young children are supervised at all times should eliminate most possibilities of an under 5-year old from getting into difficulty… or worse.
These simple rules restrict small children from entering a swimming pool or spa area:
- The top of a pool’s fence should be at least 1200mm from ground level
- All gates must be hinged to open away from the pool area
- Gates must be self-closing from any opened angle
- A self-closing latch must be fitted to each gate. If it is outside the pool area, then it must be at least 1500mm above ground level.
- The bottom and side gaps between the glass panel and another panel, wall or floor should be no greater than 100mm
- Any gap around a gate should not exceed 10mm
- Latched gates must remain closed when slammed or pulled
- There should be no objects within 900mm of the pool fence since they could be used to climb on to gain access to the gate latch or provide a foothold to climb over the fence itself. Common objects which could be used to climb are drainage downpipe brackets, wall-mounted taps, low window ledges, power points, plant pots, shrubs, ornamental rocks and items of furniture.
Some additional safeguards that are legislated for but sometimes neglected, making your pool non-compliant:
- A visible First Aid sign which shows methods of CPR and the emergency call number ‘000’
- An unlatched, very slowly-closing or propped open gate
- Conductive materials within 1250mm of the water will require electrical earthing
- Overhanging foliage which constitutes a climbable object
- A gate which blows open or doesn’t close fully when it is windy
Australian Standard for Pool Fencing Laws & Regulations
Pool fencing laws, regulations and penalties differ from state to state, as do their application to newly- installed swimming pools, existing pools and certain types of dwellings and property layouts. Because of this, it is important to have a local Pool Safety Inspector’s advice on areas of question who will also be able to inform you of exemptions.
Owners Selling or Leasing a Property with a Pool
Owners planning on selling or leasing a property with a non-shared pool must first obtain a QLD Pool Safety Certificate issued by a licensed pool safety inspector. A landlord must present this certificate before a lease agreement is signed. If selling the property, the certificate must be presented before settlement. If a certificate is unavailable, the seller may obtain a ‘Form 36 Notice of No Pool Safety Certificate’ when negotiating the sale. This form places the onus on the buyer to produce a Pool Safety Certificate within 90 days of purchasing the property and the acceptance of all associated costs.
Owners or buyers of properties with pools can check to see if the pool has been registered with the QLD Pool Safety Register. This register lists all pools that hold current Pool Safety Certificates alongside a current list of approved pool safety inspectors.
Renovating/Upgrading Your Pool Area
Whether you are purchasing a new home with a ‘Form 36 Notice of No Pool Safety Certificate’ or you are an existing pool owner who needs to upgrade your current pool fencing to meet the new regulations, or you simply wish to modernise your pool area, Aqua Vista Glass can help.
We sell only the highest quality glass pool fencing, that not only meets all new Qld pool safety laws, but also looks fantastic to boot! Glass pool fencing has distinct advantages over aluminium railing fencing, as there are no gaps that can act as hand holds, and is extremely tough and durable.
Glass pool fencing is also aesthetically pleasing and will enhance your home’s beauty by not obstructing your views. Our in-house team of experienced designers and installers can have your new pool fence installed in no time at all; allowing you to enjoy the quality and peace of mind only an Aqua Vista Glass pool fence can deliver.