If you are an Australian homeowner and you have a swimming pool or spa within the property, it must be compliant with local authority safety guidelines. The Swimming Pool Act of 1992 was amended in 2013 and that means any pool or spa with a depth of more than 300mm must be certified. There is one exception; a spa that can be emptied, but all other pools or spas, whether indoor or out, and above or in-ground, must be compliant.
Who Issues the Pool Compliance Certificate?
Fortunately, there are firms who issue a swimming pool safety certificate in Sydney and they must be accredited by local government. An online search will help you to make contact with a local provider, and prior to arranging the inspection, you should check the following:
- Inside the Pool Area – The inspector will want to see a legible CPR sign that can be seen from all locations within the pool area. All furniture must be located outside the fence off area; the only objects that can be inside are water filtration and pump equipment, fixed slides or water features and pool cleaning tools.
- The Pool Fencing – The fencing must be of solid construction and have no gaps larger than 100mm, which includes the underside of the fencing. Any space larger than 100mm is considered large enough for a small child to climb through, so make sure that your pool fencing complies.
- Outward Opening Gate – The gate to the pool area must be outward opening and if you have a system whereby the gate can easily be propped open, remove this prior to the inspection, as the certifier would not pass the pool if there is a prop to keep the gate open. You are advised to install spring hinges that automatically close the gate after use, as this ensures the gate will always be in the closed position.
- Adjacent to Pool Fencing – There must be no objects (natural or otherwise) within a range of 1200mm of the pool fencing, as these are considered to be climbing hazards that a child could use to climb over the pool fencing.
In the event the pool does not pass the test, you will be issued with a pool non-compliance certificate, and you then have 90 days to carry out the necessary amendments to make the pool compliant. If you ever wish to sell your property and it has a non-compliance certificate, the new owner has a period of 90 days to comply, but it is better for all concerned if you have the pool certified prior to putting the property on the market.
Even if you do not have any children or pets, a neighbour’s toddler or pet could gain access to the pool while you are away, which is why the state government decided to force all pool owners to comply with the safety standards. If you would like to know more about pool certification, a Google search is all it takes to make contact with an accredited pool certification company, and with their help, your pool will be safe for use.