Swimming pool bylaws: Pool safety according to the law
The South African Bureau of Standards clamped down on pool owners last year, introducing more lifesaving regulations that you need to know!
The shocking truth is that the number of children and babies that drown in private pools in South Africa is unreasonably high and it is for this reason The South African Bureau of Standards has begun to enforce the following rules:
- Every private swimming pool needs to be enclosed by a professionally built and installed fence that is at least 1.2 metres tall, with a double latch mechanism on the gate. The fence must not be built in a way that it can be climbed over.
- In addition to having a fence, the pool should be covered with a child-safe net or cover that is able to withstand the weight of an adult. Once again, these nets and covers must be built by industry professionals.
NOTE: A cover does not qualify as up to standard if it is able to undone or removed by a child.
- Lifesaving tools should be kept close to the swimming pool in case of distress. These tools may include a leaf scoop, pool brush or floater which can be used to pull a person to the edge of the pool.
- In addition to a double latch, pool gates should be self-closing.
- Pools that do not meet the standards of safety should be kept empty to prevent drowning.
Andrew Ingram, Drowning Prevention Manager at the NSRI, wants all pool owners to know that drowning can happen very quickly and often the splash of a person jumping or falling into the pool goes unnoticed.
Whenever people are playing, lazing or enjoying time inside or near the swimming pool, there should be sufficient supervision to ensure the safety of swimmers. Vigilance is the key to preventing more deaths by drowning in South Africa.