Spa & Swimming Pool Fencing Regulations in Victoria
So you’re thinking about installing a swimming pool or spa, and you’ve begun researching the market for fun shapes and styles for your residential property.
With all the fun stuff aside, hopefully your research has led you to the private pool & spa standards and regulations in Victoria for a better understanding of what is required.
During May 2020 the Victorian Government released a press statement stating that the deadline for mandatory registration has been extended to 1 November 2020 giving pool and spa owners an additional 5 months to complete registration from the original June 2020 deadline.
The Minister of Planning, Richard Wynne had this to say, “We know many people are doing it tough and this gives owners and councils more time to comply with the new regulations ahead of next summer. Pool and spa ownership is a choice and with that choice comes the responsibility of making sure they are safe.”
The media release from Swimming Pool & Spa Association of Victoria (SPASAVIC) CEO, Chris Samartzis, stated, “With the current Covid-19 environment causing people duress, extending the timelines for people to have their pools and spas registered is a welcomed response. We urge all pool and spa owners to register with their local councils by the 1st of November. It is a simple process that will provide a safe environment to enjoy the backyard pool or spa.”
There is undoubtedly a need to increase the safety of children in pool and spa areas as there has been 27 drowning deaths of children 5 years and younger in private, residential pools having occurred since the year 2000.
In these instances, the Coroner found that in at least 20 of these cases a non-compliant safety barrier may have played a role in the deaths of the young children.
Pool and Spa Safety Barrier Requirements
Under the current rules and regulations for pools and spa fencing in Victoria which has a depth greater than 30cm (300mm), the requirements have been split into 3 categories based on the period your pool was constructed and installed:
- installed before 8 April 1991
- Installed between 8 April 1991 and 30 April 2010
- Installed from 1 May 2010
*for detailed information on pool safety barriers (including downloadable checklists) see the Victoria Building Authority website
As a spa or pool owner you are required by law to maintain the proper operation of your swimming pool or/ and spa barrier to prevent access into the area. Here are some of the important points which cover current requirements, and should be used as a guide only:
Pool and Spa Building Standards
According to the VBA, swimming pools and spas in the State of Victoria must be compliant with numerous requirements including:
- a registered domestic builder or owner-builder MUST build and install the safety barrier for pool or spa;
- once the excavation begins, and the pool, structure for the pool, or spa, contains more than 300 mm of water, a safety barrier complying with Australian Standards (AS) 1926.1-2012 MUST be erected and maintained;
- safety barriers MUST have the required minimum height of 1.2m
- if you have an outdoor pool and/or spa built after 1 May 2010, there MUST NOT be direct access to the pool area via a door from a building (i.e. garage or house);
- all pool gates MUST have a self-latching and self-closing mechanism;
- safety barriers MUST NOT be installed near structures which will allow children the ability to climb and access the pool and/or spa area. These structures include trees, barbeques, pot plants and outdoor furniture.
* please consult the Frameless Impressions team for further information
For further information on registration, registration deadlines, pool and spa barrier requirements, and more, please visit the Victoria Building Authority website, or contact the qualified, experienced Frameless Impressions team on 1300 769 993.