Swimming pools, spas and safety barriers
From 5 November 2001, all new pool and spa installations must meet the requirements of the Building Regulations 2012 and comply with the minimum requirements of AS1926.1.
Before commencing any building works you need to obtain a Building Permit for the pool/spa and isolation barrier. Once installation is complete, you must notify the City to organise an inspection of the barrier. Please note that a fee will be levied for this inspection and is independent of the Building Permit application fee.
Please contact Building Services on 9528 0333 to discuss the proposed swimming pool and safety barrier requirements for the Building Permit submission, or refer to building permits and applications for the application form required.
Swimming pools and spas require an inspection upon installation of the safety barrier which is required as soon as water reaches a depth of 300mm or greater. Inspections the occur within a four-year period.
The City's Building Services Administration Officers will contact the property owner to arrange these inspections. Fees associated with these inspections are independent of the Building Permit application fees. See Four Yearly Inspection Fees below.
Four-Yearly Inspection Fees
The City is required by law to inspect, once in every four-year period, all private pools and spa barriers. The inspection is to ensure that the barrier meets the minimum requirements of AS1926.1 and is suitable to restrict access to the pool/spa by "young children" (children under the age of five years).
The barrier is to remain in place at all times and penalties apply for non-compliance. These existing pools/spas must receive a compliant inspection once in every four-yearly period. This inspection is compulsory and is carried out by a member of the City's Building Services Compliance Team.
To enable the four-yearly barrier inspection regime to be carried out, the City has fixed a charge of $132.00 per pool/spa. The inspection fee is independent of the initial Building Permit application fee. It is charged annually and will appear itemised on your Rates Notice as one quarter of the total charge ($33). The fee is ongoing to ensure the regime is continued.
Note 1: This “barrier inspection fee” is separate and independent of the Building Permit application fee.
Note 2: A Building Permit is required to be obtained prior to the works commencing on the pool/spa and/or barrier.
Note 3: One-off inspections may also be provided at a time suitable to the home owner/occupier and at a cost.
Important note: Drowning is preventable. Adult supervision when young children are within the enclosure is essential for child safety. Maintain the barrier at all times. Do not prop the gate open.
Please contact the City's Building Services on 9528 0333 to book and inspection or to seek advice regarding an existing or proposed barrier.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need an isolation barrier if I do not have children?
Yes. It is the owners/occupiers' responsibility to ensure that any structure containing water to a depth greater than 300mm that is used primarily for swimming, wading, paddling or the like, including a bathing or wading pool or spa pool, requires a barrier that complies with AS 1926.1.
I have an inflatable pool, is it required to comply with the standards and regulations?
If the structure is to be used primarily for swimming, wading, paddling or the like and is capable of containing water to a depth greater than 300mm you will need to comply with the requirements of the Building Regulations 2012 and AS1926.1.
How long do I have after installation of my pool/spa before I need to erect a barrier?
If the structure contains water to a depth greater than 300mm, installation of a compliant barrier is an immediate requirement. If you cannot install a permanent barrier immediately (due to compaction, concreting, paving etc.) a temporary solution must be provided. Your temporary fence must still meet the minimum requirements of AS1926.1 and will require an inspection by a representative from the City.
Does my pool/spa need approval from the City?
Yes. You will need to submit an application for a Building Permit. The application must contain construction details/engineering drawings where applicable for the proposed pool/spa. Please contact the City's Building Services on 9528 0333 to discuss or to seek advice.
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