Pool Fence Regulations NSW Q&A Series No1: Answers to "How" Questions

Drowning in swimming pools is one of the leading causes of death amongst young children. A compliant pool fencing, together with proper supervision helps reduce accidents in the pool.

Indoor and spa pool owners are both required to follow swimming pool law in NSW. Different pool owners have different questions on NSW pool compliance and safety regulations. See below for some of the most frequently asked questions and the proper answers.

1.      How to keep children safe around a pool?

An effective way to prevent accidents in the pool area is adult supervision during swimming times. Following the safety pool regulation can also minimise possible incidents around the pool. Pool owners must follow the law to ensure the pool is safe.

The pool should:                   

  • The pool should be surrounded by a fence with proper measurements.
  • The fence should be self-closing and self-latching with latches that are out of the reach of children.
  • The fence should completely separate the pool from the house.
  • Install a firm pool safety cover.
  • Install an underwater motion alarm in it.

Obeying the safety regulation can help lessen accidents in the pool area. The first step to keep your swimming pool safe is to register it.

2.      How to check if a pool is registered?

All private pools and spas owners are required to enlist their pools in NSW safety register. You can visit their website and take a look if your pool is registered.

The pool safety register has records of pools and issued pool safety certificates as well as a list of all licensed pool safety inspectors.

However, if your pool has not yet been registered, you can apply your pool at the NSW swimming pool website. Read below to know how.

3.      How to register your pool in NSW?

NSW swimming pool register provides pool owners with the required pool safety checklists and updates. Their website is designed to be readable for visitors. You can easily register your pool on their website.

Here are the steps on registering your swimming pool.

  • Visit the Swimming Pool Register Website:  http://www.swimmingpoolregister.nsw.gov.au
  • Enter your email address. You will then receive an automatically-generated email.
  • Open your email and click on the provided link that will redirect you to the NSW registration page.
  • Answer the questions on the page; select the answers that best match your pool.
  • Based on your answers, the relevant pool safety checklist will be provided.
  • Inspect your pool using the checklist.
  • Complete the registration form.
  • Upon completion, you will then receive a Registration Certificate confirming that your pool is now on the NSW Swimming Pool Register.

Registering your pool on the NSW pool register is free. However, if you prefer to let your local council register your pool on your behalf, they may charge you up to $10.     

After your registeration, you can now have your pool inspected. Local council or private certifiers can examine your pool.  If your pool meets safety regulations, the local council or the private certifier can issue you a certificate of compliance.

4.      How to get compliance certificate for pool fencing?

All indoor and spa swimming pools with a depth greater than 300mm should install a pool barrier. Pool owners are required to obtain a certificate of compliance.

A compliance certificate confirms that your pool safety barrier has been inspected by a pool safety adviser and meets the NSW regulations.

To apply for a certificate of compliance you must provide your name, address of your property and the size of your pool ect to the pool inspector.

For further information, you can ask a private certifier or visit your local council website.

5.      How much does it cost to have my swimming pool inspected in NSW?

Local councils may demand up to $150 for an initial pool safety inspection. If a second inspection is required as a follow-up, you will be charged a fee of up to $100. Usually, accredited certifiers set their own schedule of fees. On the other hand, no further payment may be asked for inspections done by the local council.

Click here to see the real difference between a local council and private certifier

6.      How to fix non-compliance issue for swimming pool?

If a pool is inspected by a local council and found to be non-compliant, the council will provide pool owners a list of requirements to achieve compliance.

Furthermore, if the pool barriers have not been fixed upon the second inspection, the council may issue an order to the owner to comply the required actions within a reasonable time, as specified in the order.

Private certifiers who also provide repair service can assist you with solving pool problems to meet the safety pool requirements from the beginning to the end. The repair cost is usually quote based and it depends on how much repair work needs to be done. They can have an initial inspection on your pool, conduct the repair work and eventually issue you with pool complaint certificate.

However, if you choose not to follow the legal requirements, you will receive a fine from the local government.

7.      How much fine for no pool fence?

In NSW, if a swimming pool is not compliant with safety pool regulation, the pool owner will be fined $5,500. Local council can also issue on-the-spot penalty notice of $550. Failure to comply with the law will literally cause expensive penalties.

Conclusion

Pool owners must follow safety pool requirements. They are also required to register their pool on NSW Government's swimming pool register. Registering your pool will provide you updates on pool safety and inspection requirements.

Get your pool inspected, repair it if necessary and make sure it is safe for everyone to use!