On 1st December 2019, new laws to improve swimming pool and spa safety came into effect in Victoria. They introduced new registration, inspection and certification requirements for property owners.
If you are the owner of land on which a pool or spa is located, you must register your pool and spa with the relevant council by 1st November 2020.
You can contact your local council or check their website for more information on how to register your pool or spa, including the fees payable.
For further information on registration, including information on registration deadlines please visit the VBA.
An inspection system has also been introduced as part of the new laws – all pool and spa owners are required to arrange an inspection of the safety barrier to determine if the barrier is compliant with the applicable barrier standard, every four years.
The deadlines for inspection and lodgement of certificate of barrier compliance are staggered based on the date your pool or spa was installed – further information on the deadlines can be accessed via the VBA.
All swimming pools and spas on residential properties in Victoria with a depth greater than 30cm (300mm) are required to be surrounded by a safety barrier (e.g. a pool fence). There are currently 3 sets of requirements for pool/spa barriers in Victoria – these are based on when your pool or spa was constructed:
Below are some important points to help explain the current requirements for pool barriers. Please note that the information below is not exhaustive and is a guide only:
Images courtesy of the Victorian Building Authority
For a more detailed insight into Victoria’s pool and spa barrier laws, please visit the Victorian Building Authority’s website.
All pool and spa barriers experience wear and tear over time (including rust, missing bolts or screws and damage), which is why it is important to ensure your barrier is regularly checked and maintained.
Even with the new laws introducing inspection and certification requirements once every four years, it’s still important that you regularly check and maintain your barrier to ensure it is in proper working order.
Checking the safety of your pool barrier might seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be! The resources below will guide you through some simple and more comprehensive checks that you can do to help you keep your pool area safe.
Our friends at Safetech Hardware Australia have also established a handy pool maintenance reminder which allows you to register and receive reminders and useful resources to help you complete a home pool self assessment.