Summer has arrived with a vengeance and, as people seek to cool off, swimming pools of all shapes and sizes are finding their way into backyards—many that may not adhere to pool safety laws says Mayor Kerry Hayes.
‘It is pleasing to see the National Drowning Report 2018 shows a 25 percent decrease in drowning deaths in swimming pools since last year,’ he said.
‘Much of this improvement is attributed to the swimming pool fencing laws, however the number of under five-year-old children drowning in backyard pools with inadequate supervision and no, or faulty, fencing remains a worry to authorities,’ the mayor said.
‘Supervising young children, teaching them to swim, having effective pool fencing and always closing the gate can save lives; this is why pool safety laws were introduced.’
According to the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC), a swimming pool is defined as an above or below ground structure principally used for swimming or bathing, including some models of portable pools, inflatable pools and spas.
‘If your portable pool or spa has the ability to hold more than 300 millimetres of water, which is less than adult knee height, or it’s got a filter then the laws apply to you,’ Mayor Hayes said.
‘If you have an existing pool, a new pool or are thinking of getting a pool, please head to the QBCC website and look through their tips and tools to help you navigate your legal requirements.’
All pools must be registered with the QBCC and pool barriers must comply with safety standards. Residents also need a pool safety certificate when a property is sold or leased.
Council has the power to investigate for pool safety standards and can issue hefty on-the-spot fines if the pool is not compliant.
‘If you have any questions or think you may need a fencing or building approval, give council a call on 1300 242 686,’ Mayor Hayes said.