Pool safety standard

The Queensland Government has introduced pool safety laws to reduce drowning and serious immersion injuries in swimming pools and spas.

From 1 December 2015, it is mandatory that all pools in Queensland – including spas (portable and fixed) and portable pools – comply with the pool safety standard. The pool safety standard for Queensland, the Queensland Development Code Mandatory Part 3.4, is to be read in conjunction with AS1926.1.   The standard covers such things as the height and strength of barriers, mandatory non-climbable zones, gates and their latching requirements and preventing direct access from a building into a pool area.  Fines apply for non-compliance.

Read more about pool safety and compliance on the QBCC website.

Wading pools

 Some inflatable wading pools are also subject to State regulation.  An inflatable wading pool is classified as a “regulated swimming pool”:

  • if it can be filled with water to a depth of 300mm or more; or
  • it holds more than 2,000 litres of water; or
  • it has a filtration system.

Council receives dozens of complaints each year about inflatable wading pools and in most cases the owners are ordered to empty and remove the pool.

If you are thinking of purchasing a wading pool and are uncertain of your obligations please contact Council on 4044 3044 for guidance.

Pool Safety Register and safety certificates

All new swimming pools and spas require building approval from a Private Building Certifier.

All residential pools and spas in Queensland must be registered with the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC). There is no charge to register a pool, however, failure to register a pool can incur a fine. The Pool Safety Register is a state-wide database that keeps a record of all the regulated pools in Queensland.

The Queensland Government requires you to have a Pool Safety Certificate (referred to as Form 23) when buying, selling or leasing a property with a pool or spa.  These certificates are issued by a licensed pool safety inspector are valid for one year for a shared pool and two years for a non-shared pool.  Once a certificate expires, a new certificate is not required unless the property is sold or leased again.

Pool owners seeking a pool safety certificate need to contact a Licensed Pool Safety Inspector to arrange an inspection. Pool Safety Inspectors can only issue a certificate when they have placed the certificate details onto the state-based Pool Safety Register.

Council has Licensed Pool Safety Inspectors who can conduct Pool Safety Inspections and issue Pool Safety Certificates – fees apply. Alternatively, you can engage a private Pool Safety Inspector. Visit the QBCC Pool Safety website for more information about swimming pool safety requirements and to search for a licensed Pool Safety Inspector.

Pool fencing

The standard for fencing around a swimming pool is contained in the following legislation:

  • AS1926.1 -2007 Swimming Pool Safety Part 1: Fencing for swimming pools
  • AS1926.2 -1995 Swimming Pool Safety Part 2: Location of fencing for private swimming pools
  • Queensland Development Code Mandatory Part 3.4 – Swimming Pool Barriers

Pool owners are responsible for ensuring pool barriers are maintained and damaged fencing or barriers are fixed immediately.

For more information about swimming pool fences and safety barriers, visit the Queensland Government Pool Safety website.