Monthly Archives

June 2020

Installing a Pool Fence Can Save Your Child’s Life

By | Pool Safety

Written by QBCC QLD Admin and published on https://www.qbcc.qld.gov.au/.

When it comes to water safety, you can never be too careful. The danger of drowning is more prevalent than most parents think. A major realization that parents need to come to is that inevitably, even the most vigilant supervision can fail. This is when installing a pool fence in your backyard can be the most important safety decision you’ll ever make.

Using Dividing Fences As A Pool Barrier

In Queensland, dividing fences are often used as pool barriers as an efficient way to comply with pool safety laws. If you have to construct a new fence, replace, or modify an existing pool fence or barrier that you share with your neighbour, it’s important that it is compliant.

You can use the wall of a building on a common boundary as long as it’s compliant. You may need to build a separate barrier where any part of the wall does not meet the requirements of the pool safety standard.

Do I need to get development approval?

If you are replacing or modifying a boundary fence, you may need development approval. Contact your local government before commencing any building work.

Working with your neighbour

Discuss the fencing work with your neighbour before making any decisions. If you are unable to, or decide against discussing the work with your neighbour, you must give them a notice about the proposed work – Form 39 – Notice of proposed fencing work for a pool barrier, at least 14 days prior to starting any work.

Form 39 includes information about the type of fence proposed and the materials to be used.

Prescribed materials

The proposed pool barrier must be consistent with the existing fence (e.g. similar materials and colours), unless this prevents the fence from complying with the pool safety standard.

Who pays?

The pool laws in Queensland adopt a user-pays system. The pool owner must pay the full cost where the fencing work is required for a pool fence to be compliant with the pool safety laws.

If there is a pool on both sides of the dividing fence and both pool owners need to make the barrier compliant, the cost is shared equally. However, where one pool owner requires fencing work and the other pool owner doesn’t, the full cost must be paid by the pool owner requiring the work.

You can use a Form 41 – Agreement to contribute for fencing work for a pool barrier to formalise the agreement with your neighbour.

Access to neighbour’s property

If you need to enter your neighbour’s property to construct part of a pool barrier, you must get permission.

Your request for access should be reasonable and limited to the part of the adjoining land necessary to do the fencing work. If your neighbour doesn’t agree, you can make application to the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) to obtain an order.

The exception to this rule is for the urgent repair of a damaged fence. It’s important that you urgently restore the dividing fence to a reasonable standard and it may not be possible to get permission from your neighbour.

Changing the style

You may paint or change the appearance of your side of the fence, as long as you don’t materially alter or damage the fence. To change the character of an existing fence, you must get permission from your neighbour. In the case where you neighbour won’t give consent, you can contact QCAT to obtain an order.

Disagreements

If you and your neighbour are unable to come to an agreement regarding the proposed fencing work or financial contributions, try and resolve the issue by taking the matter to QCAT.
You can only take further action through QCAT if:

  • a Form 39 has been given to your neighbour; and
  • it is within 2 months from the date you issued them with the form.

Other types of pool fences/barriers

Spas –

A spa needs to be fully compliant with the pool safery standard. A lockable lid is not sufficient.

Temporary fencing –

If you need to remove a pool fence for any reason, you must construct a temporary one in its place. It should comply with the pool safety standard and have at least one compliant gate.

You can install a temporary fence for up to three months, provided it’s been inspected and approved by a building certifier.

For further time extensions, contact the certifier to organise another inspection and obtain written permission.

Special purpose-built fence (e.g. to keep a dog )

If your pool fence has a dual function and provides an enclosure for your dog as well as the pool, it must comply with the requirements for a special purpose fence. This means that it must also prevent a child from reaching into the enclosure.

Original post here https://www.qbcc.qld.gov.au/home-building-owners/pool-safety/using-dividing-fences-pool-barrier.

Pool And Spa Registration Requirements

By | Pool Safety

Written by Admin and published on https://www.melbourne.vic.gov.au/.

If you are the owner of land on which a pool or spa is located, you must register your pool and spa with the relevant council. Contact the council or check their website for more information on how to register your pool or spa, including the fees payable. You will be required to complete a registration form and pay the registration fee. For pools and spas constructed or commenced before 1 November 2020, an information search fee will also be payable.

Swimming Pool and Spa Registration

The Victorian Government has introduced new requirements to improve swimming pool and spa safety, including inspection, maintenance and compliance requirements for property owners.

It is now mandatory for owners of land where a swimming pool or spa is located to register their pool or spa with the relevant council.

If you own a pool or spa in the City of Melbourne municipality, you now need to:

  • Register your swimming pool or spa with City of Melbourne before 1 June 2020.
  • Arrange for an inspection of your pool or spa safety barrier for compliance every four years.
  • Lodge a Pool and Spa Barrier Compliance Certificate with City of Melbourne every four years.
  • Pay the prescribed fees to City of Melbourne upon registration and lodgement of the certificate.

We will not be sending formal notification to owners, so be sure to register as soon as you are able before 1 November 2020.

There will be a penalty if you do not register your pool by 1 November 2020.

Why has the law changed?

Pools and spas are the most common location of drownings for children aged five and under, and on average four children die in home pools and spas every year.

Eighty per cent of swimming pool and spa barriers in Victoria aren’t meeting safety standards. The new state-wide regulations aim to make pools and spas safer for everyone, particularly kids aged five and under.

How to register your pool or spa

If you own a property that has a permanent or relocatable pool or spa, you need to register your details with us by submitting the application form below:

Application to register a swimming pool or spa

APPLICATION TO REGISTER A SWIMMING POOL OR SPA PDF 186 KB
PDF 186 KBAPPLICATION TO REGISTER A SWIMMING POOL OR SPA DOC 110 KB
DOC 110 KB

There is a one-off registration fee of $79 set by the Victorian Government to cover administration costs, including an information search fee.

What happens after you’ve registered

After you register, you will receive an email confirmation that your pool or spa is registered.

You don’t need to do anything else until we contact you with more information explaining:

  • the date of construction of your pool or spa
  • which standards apply to your barrier
  • the date by which the first or next certificate of barrier compliance must be lodged with us.

Pool and spa registration – FAQs

More information

​For more information and queries about the new pool and spa safety standards introduced by the Victorian Government, as well as safety barrier guides, visit Victorian Building Authority (VBA) – Swimming pool and spa registration requirements.

Original post here https://www.melbourne.vic.gov.au/building-and-development/planning-and-building-services/building-safety-amenity/Pages/swimming-pool-spa-registration.aspx.

 

Pool Inspection Self-Assessment Checklists

By | Pool Safety Inspections

Written by My Pool Safety  and published on https://www.mypoolsafety.com.au/.

To meet the swimming pool fence regulations in NSW and to avoid getting a non-compliance certificate after a pool compliance inspection, you should go through a proper evaluation on your pool safety. If you’re a pool owner, maintaining your pool includes more than just testing the water.Your pool fence or barrier must also be regularly checked.

There are strict laws about fence height, gate latches and other necessary inclusions, and you can learn more about these legal requirements with our easy-to-use interactive pool compliance checklist. It will help you find out whether any areas of your pool barrier need attention by explaining some basic scenarios.

2019 Latest NSW Pool Safety Inspection Checklist

To meet the swimming pool fence regulations in NSW and to avoid getting a non-compliance certificate after a pool compliance inspection, you should go through a proper evaluation on your pool safety.

Here is a self-assessment checklist in 2019 to determine if your pool is compliant with the Australian Standards (NSW Pool Fencing Law ) . If you want to discuss your pool barrier request an inspection.

Pool fence

  • Pool fence should be at least 1200mm high (from the ground level).
  • The gap from the bottom of the fence to the ground is no more than 100mm.
  • If a boundary fence is part of the pool fence, the barrier should be 1800mm high from the pool area.
  • The gap between the vertical bars in the fence should not exceed 100mm.
  • The gap between the horizontal bars should be at least 900mm apart.
  • The holes in the barrier (if mesh fencing is used) should be 13mm or less.
  • The pool fence should be well maintained and in good working condition (no holes, rust or broken parts).

Pool gate and windows

  • Gate should be self-closing from any position.
  • The gate should latch by itself.
  • The latching device should be at least 1500mm above the ground level.
  • The gate should open outwards (away from the pool).
  • Windows should open not more than 100mm and should have a locking device.

Non-Climbable Zone (NCZ)

  • There should be no potential hand holds or foot holds (e.g. shrubs, trees, pot plants, ladders, chairs and other objects) within the 900mm non-climbable zone.
  • Non-Climbable Zone should be measured in an arc shape from the top of the fence to the ground.
  • There should be a 300mm clearance from the barrier inside the pool area.
  • An appropriate warning sign such as the CPR guidelines should be available near the pool area and can be easily read from a distance of 3m.

For indoor pools and spas

Checklist for all indoor pools, including spas that don’t have a lockable child –resistant closure:

  • The latch on the gate should be at least 1500mm above ground level.
  • There should be no pet door or opening that is more than 100mm.
  • There should be no wall openings greater than 100mm.
  • The windows should open to a maximum of 100mm.
  • An appropriate and clear warning sign such as the CPR guidelines should be available near the pool area and can be easily read from a distance of 3m.
  • There should be no climbable objects within 1200mm area outside the fence.

This assessment only serves as a guide as of 2019 for you before having your pool safety inspection which is required by the local NSW government .

If you have completed the checklist above, you can now book or schedule a pool safety inspection who can provide you with a compliance certificate or help you fix any non-compliance issues for your swimming pool.

Original post here https://www.mypoolsafety.com.au/nsw-pool-compliance-inspection-checklist.

Requirements for CPR and Warning Signs

By | Pool Safety

Written by QBCC QLD Admin and published on https://www.qbcc.qld.gov.au/.

CPR signs mandatory in pool areas. You must have a cardio pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) sign displayed near your pool or spa that complies with ‘Guideline 8—cardiopulmonary resuscitation’ published by the Australian Resuscitation Council in January 2016.

L&V Pools supply a CPR sign as part of your handover package and recommend you install it immediately to meet https://www.totalpoolsafetyinspections.com.au/what-happens-if-your-pool-or-pool-barrier-is-non-compliant/Australian safety requirements.

To comply with pool safety laws and achieve pool safety certification, homeowners and businesses who have pools, who are selling or renting a property with a pool, or are installing a new pool, must install a CPR sign.

CPR and warning signs

If you have a pool, you must display a CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) sign prominently.

If you’re building a new pool, you must display a warning sign during construction and a CPR sign when it’s completed.

CPR signs

Signage requirements

If you’re replacing a CPR sign, ensure it:

  • is attached to the pool’s safety barrier or displayed near the pool, so a person near the pool can see it easily
  • is at least 300mm x 300mm in size
  • is made of durable and weatherproof material
  • includes a prominent statement explaining how to act in an emergency (e.g. call Triple Zero (000), stay with the injured person, provide first aid).

CPR signs bought and displayed after 1 January 2017

From 1 January 2017, any new or replacement CPR signs must show how to perform CPR in line with the technique published in ANZCOR Guideline 8 – Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (PDF), published by the Australian Resuscitation Council in January 2016.

CPR signs bought and displayed before 1 January 2017

You can continue to use an existing CPR sign until it becomes illegible if it both:

  • was purchased and displayed before 1 January 2017
  • complies with Guideline 7 – Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, published by the Australian Resuscitation Council in January 2016.

However, once you replace this sign, it must now comply with the requirements mentioned above.

Warning signs

If you’re building a swimming pool, you must display a sign stating it’s under construction before construction starts.

The warning sign must:

  • warn people that a swimming pool is under construction and there is a danger to young children accessing the land (e.g. ‘Danger. Swimming pool under construction. Keep children out.’)
  • be placed within 1.5m of the land’s road frontage
  • be mounted so the bottom of the sign is at least 300mm above ground level
  • be positioned so it’s visible from the road
  • be made of weatherproof material
  • have the warning written in bold text at least 50mm high.

If the land has more than one road frontage, you only need a warning sign on one.

This requirement doesn’t apply to portable pools that don’t require a building approval.

What Happens If Your Pool or Pool Barrier is Non-Compliant

By | Pool Safety

Written by QBCC QLD Admin and published on https://www.qbcc.qld.gov.au/.

Owning a swimming pool comes with great responsibility. It is not enough to just make it pleasing to your eyes. You should also make sure that it is safe to use especially for younger kids. Aside from that, the pool should comply with the necessary pool standards.

Unfortunately, mistakes can be inevitable for pool owners. These common mistakes can make the pool non-compliant result in paying expensive fines. To help you prevent these mishaps, here is a blog post about 6 mistakes that make pool non-compliant.

What to do if your pool is non-compliant

A pool safety certificate is only needed if the property is sold or leased.

What happens if my pool doesn’t comply?

The purpose of a compliant pool is to provide a safeguard for young children from drowning or injury in regulated pools. If your pool is non-compliant, you may get a fine from your local government.

How to make your pool compliant and avoid a fine

You can:

  • get advice from a licensed pool safety inspector about what to do to make your pool comply; or
  • get a licensed pool safety inspector to do a formal inspection with a view to getting a certificate (for peace of mind).

If you choose to get a formal inspection and your pool doesn’t comply, you will receive a non-conformity notice.  If you don’t request a re-inspection within three months, the pool safety inspector has to give a copy of the notice to your local government.

Can I sell my property if my pool doesn’t have a pool safety certificate?

Yes, you are still able to sell your property.

Seller’s responsibility

Complete the Form 36 – Notice of no pool safety certificate and provide a copy to the buyer and the QBCC. If you own a property with a shared pool, you will also need to provide a copy of the form to the owner of the pool (usually a body corporate). If you are the pool owner, you are responsible for ensuring the barrier is compliant with the pool safety standard at all times, even after providing/receiving the Form 36. Failing to do so may result in penalties.

Buyer’s responsibility

Obtain a certificate within 90 days after settlement.

Leasing  a property with a non-shared pool

You must hold a valid certificate before you lease your property.

Original post here https://www.qbcc.qld.gov.au/home-building-owners/pool-safety/what-do-if-your-pool-non-compliant.

Pool Safety: How to Comply with the Pool Fencing Regulations

By | Pool Safety

Written by QBCC QLD Admin and published on https://www.qbcc.qld.gov.au/.

Swimming pool owners in Queensland have an obligation to abide by the Pool Fence Regulations In QLD that stipulate their pool barriers should meet certain minimum standards if they are to comply with the safety standards. The main reason behind these regulations is to minimise and where possible eliminate cases of children drowning and suffering serious immersion injuries.

Does Your Pool Comply?

The pool safety standard covers such things as the height and strength of barriers, mandatory non-climbable zones, gates and their latching requirements and preventing direct access from a building into a pool area.

To assist in finding out if your pool meets the current pool safety standard, use the checklist below as it covers some of the main issues:

Fences

  • The minimum height from finished ground level (a permanent stable surface) to the top of the barrier is 1200mm.
  • The maximum allowable gap from finished ground level to the bottom of any barrier is 100mm.
  • There must be one gap of at least 900mm between any horizontal rails on the outside, and the gaps in the vertical members must not exceed 100mm at any point.
  • If there is no gap between horizontal rails of at least 900mm, then the horizontal rails must be on the inside and the gaps in the vertical rails must not exceed 10mm.
  • For fences less than 1800mm high, climbable objects must be at least 900mm away from the pool barrier on the outside and, where the verticals are more than 10mm apart, 300mm on the inside.
  • For fences at least 1800mm high, the 900mm non-climbable zone may be on the inside of the fence and must be measured from the top of the inside.  This could be useful for a boundary fence, for example, where it is difficult to make the non climbable zone outside the fence . Make sure that there is nothing underneath this zone that a child could jump on to, which would reduce the effective height of the fence from the minimum 1800mm

Gates

  • Pool gates must not open inwards to the pool area and must be self-closing and self-latching from all positions.
  • Latches on the gate must be at least 1500mm high from finished ground level (a permanent stable surface) and at least 1400mm above the highest lower horizontal member. If not, the latch must be located inside so that it is necessary to reach over or through the fencing at a height of not less than 1200mm above finished ground level or at least 1000mm above the top part of the highest lower horizontal member. It must also be 150mm below the top of the gate or the edge of any hand hole opening and, if necessary, covered with a 450mm radius shield with no openings greater than 10mm
  • Pool gate hinges thicker than 10mm must be at least 900mm apart or the lower hinge must have a non-climbable (at least a sixty degree) safety cap fixed to prevent climbing.
Diagram of a pool barrier showing heights
Diagram showing the dimensions for pool barrier latches

 

Door and windows

  • There can be no direct access through a door from the house or another building, to the pool area.
  • Generally, any windows opening onto the pool area must not open more than 100mm or must have a security screen fitted.

Signage

  • A compliant CPR sign must be displayed, either attached to the pool fence, or displayed near the pool, so that the sign is easily visible to anyone near the pool.

More information

If in doubt, contact us for advice and assistance.

Penalties for non-compliance

Local governments have the power to investigate compliance with pool safety standards and can issue fines.

If you don’t comply with pool safety standards, local governments can issue on-the-spot fines.

If you fail to register your pool, QBCC can issue penalties which includes an on-the-spot fines and the court can impose penalties.

Original post here https://www.qbcc.qld.gov.au/home-building-owners/pool-safety/does-your-pool-comply.

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