Pool Fence regulation checklist
If you have a pool in your backyard you are bound to have pool fence that complies with Australian Standard AS 1926.1 latest edition 2012. It is utmost important for your kids safety as every year kids drown due to parents negligence. Therefore safety always comes first. So what you need to do to have pool fence around your pool and that is what we are going to discuss about in this article that you understand fencing regulations even though it is not possible to cover every permutation of the pool fence layout and the design so that is why it is important to show you abbreviated guidelines to show you the key aspect of the regulations. However you will require a qualified certifier to ensure compliance of your pool fence.
Quality of products you buy:
First of all I would like to specify few points what you should be looking for when you decide to buy pool fence from a supplier or even a contractor comes and install pool fence for you.
(1) Ask for pool fence compliance certificate when buying pool fence. This compliance should be as per Australian Standards 1926.1 latest edition 2012. (2007 edition is an old edition and not applicable any more). Ask for certificate for your record and to show it to the appropriate authorities concerned.
(2) Make sure the pool fence is 1200 mm high and is made of Aluminium but not steel as pool fence in steel intend to corrode within 2-3 months due to salty water conditions. 1200mm in height of pool fence is the measurement that is taken from any point deemed ground level.
(3) Make sure you buy material that is not only comply with Australian Standard but you also need to check some companies may get their panels checked but all other stuff such as gates, posts, locks and hinges.
(4) What should you be checking other than the panels in the pool fence is the posts are at least 50x50x 2mm thick, Latch and hinges have life time warranty, Gate is fully mitres and is made of thick material. Brackets are of good quality but not simple L brackets.
(5) Powder coating on panels should be at least 80 micron and shall take at least 7 years guarantee on painting otherwise the paint starts peeling off if not properly treated the material before powder coating. Each Aluminium panel and other aluminium products must be Chromate converted before powder coating.
(6) We do not recommend you to buy any pool fence from any backyard manufacturers as there could be many short cuts applied to keep prices down and supply to you sub-standard products. Also there is no assurance that these backyard manufacturers are there next time you go there for any noncompliance items. Poor man always buys twice same products.
Pool fence installation rules
(1) Inspect the area first from outside of the pool fence, watch out for rocks, window opening and sills and other surfaces that are easily stood upon, as these items will reduce the minimum effective height of your fence.
Anything foothold can reduce the effective height of the pool fence area – such as a tap, tree branch, pot plant or even neighbor side horizontal fence rail – that a child can use to gain access into the pool area. It is by law footholds must be at least 10mm in width to be a concern.
There should be no Climbable objects permitted within 900mm radius from the top of the pool fence. Climbable objects such as flower pots, chairs, tree branches, Neighbour fence, ladders, bricks, retaining walls, veranda, deck, window sills. However climbable objects are permitted within the upper 900mm radius quadrant of the non-climbable zone provided it is not reasonably possible for a young child to gain access to those climbable objects. There should not be any climbable rails attached to the fence as a part of fence design.
In case foothold and fence positions are colliding with each other than in that case you can make use of solutions including: Perspex shields or such barriers against the climbable foothold so it becomes a non-climbable zone. A typical example is if you start a fence from an existing batten fence which has gaps more than 10mm gaps and are considered as climbable points then the batten area should be covered up with Perspex or plywood up to 1m from the fence so that no child can make use of foothold of the batten fence.
If you are starting your pool fence from the corner of the garage please make sure additional area must be clear of objects (e.g. tree branches, decks, stairs etc.) that would reduce the minimum effective fence height of 1200mm.
Clear are (300mm). No nearby horizontal surfaces which could be used as holds for the climbing this area if fence uprights are more than 100mm apart. Ideal gap between the uprights is 70mm.
You can use walls as part of the fence provided that doors and windows have self-locking or -latching devices. Wall surfaces should not be climbable.
It is a good practice to use existing boundary fence to reduce the cost of pool fence. If so, the same regulations as above will apply to your neighbour’s fence.
Simply ensure that the boundary fence is 1800mm high and has no footholds on the pool side 900mm from the top.
All Pool Gates are required to open outwards from the pool area.
All gates must close automatically from any position. All hinges used for pool areas are adjustable hinges.
For every single gate latches should be at least 1500mm from the ground. However for glass gates this includes 1200mm (the height of the panel) and 300mm(return on back side of the panel). Ensure the gap on the latch side of the gate is no more than 10mm.
CPR Sign: It is highly recommended that a CPR chart should be attached to the fence or close to fence so that its visible to everyone.