Drowning is the most common cause of traumatic death in children aged under five years in Queensland. Approximately five toddlers drown in Queensland swimming pools every year. Almost all swimming pool drownings are preventable.
As the temperature increases, so too does the need to find a cool spot in which to relax and escape the heat, especially for children.
Many parents look to small inflatable pools for this relief but there are several issues parents should be aware of before buying these pools. Unfortunately, every year at Christmas time, a number of lives are lost around Australia due to children drowning in small pools. Sometimes, people just aren’t aware that it only takes a small amount of water for a child to drown.
Portable pools and spas can pose a serious safety risk to young children. A number of child drownings in recent years have occurred in portable pools and spas. It is therefore important to consider the safety of young children around these pools.
If your portable pool or spa can hold more than 300 millimetres of water, has a volume of more than 2,000 litres or has a filtration system, the new laws apply to you. You will need to:
Obtain a certificate from a licensed building certifier stating that your pool complies with the pool safety standard, before filling the pool or spa with more than 300 millimetres of water.
Obtain a building approval.
Register your pool or spa.
If you are selling, buying or leasing your property with a pool or SPA, a safety certificate is required from a licensed pool safety inspector. Alternatively, the portable pool or spa can be removed.
Exclusions From the New Laws
Queensland’s pool safety laws do not apply to portable pools or spas that:
Cannot be filled with more than 300 millimetres of water.
Have a maximum volume of 2,000 litres.
Have no filtration system.
All three criteria above must be met to be excluded. Many models of portable pools sold at department stores and pool shops meet these criteria, but you should check before buying.