Are kids safe around your pool this summer?

Ipswich City Council compliance officers Madalyn Templer and Trevor Kirkham checking a pool pool fence meets current standards

Swimming pools can be both fun and fatal. This holiday season keep kids safe in and around pools, especially those under five

Ipswich City Council reminds all parents to take a common sense approach and to follow these few simple tips.

The Royal Lifesaving Society also encourages home owners to make this weekend your pool safety check weekend.

Over the last 25 years 965 children under the age of five have drowned in Australia. Swimming pools remian the leading location for child drowning.

Parents are urged to be vigilant around pools by repairing faulty gates and not propping gates open.

Momentary lapses in supervision also contribute to drowning.

New pool safety laws were introduced in December 2015 which required all regulated pools to meet a single swimming pool barrier standard.

Although these changes were minimal from pre-existing Ipswich City Council laws it’s never too late for homeowners to check or recheck if they are affected by the following:

• Prohibiting direct access from a building to the pool
• Installing a compliant CPR sign
• Shielding or removing climbable objects near the fence
• Your pool fence should be at least 1200mm high and any gaps in or under the fence less than 100mm

The standards apply to new and existing pools in houses, unit complexes, hotels, motels, backpacker accommodation, caravan parks and mobile van parks.

Pool owners can conduct a free Queensland self-assessment check here to determine if pool/spa fencing is compliant.

The Royal Lifesaving Society has a detailed checklist here for pool owners.

Importantly, safety messages apply to adults with children around any water, including lagoons, dams and rivers, that is: water is only safe when you keep watch and that looking at smart phones doesn’t make for smart parents.

Supervisors of children should be within arm’s reach.  Ipswich City Council also reminds people that lifeguards at public pools and lagoons are not babysitters.


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