Have you registered your pool?

06 November 2013

All NSW pool owners have until 19 November to register their pools under new State Government legislation.

Pool owners who have not yet registered their pools in the new state register are urged to visit the new Division of Local Government register at www.swimmingpoolregister.nsw.gov.au and register before the 19 November deadline. Pool owners without computer access are welcome to visit the AlburyCity Offices on Kiewa Street where a Council officer will be able to assist.

The state-wide push towards greater pool compliance is aimed at lowering the number of childhood drownings in NSW. On average, six children die every year in backyard swimming pools in NSW. A further 60 are admitted to hospital after a near drowning experience. Of those, a quarter will develop a hypoxic brain injury.

“Research indicates that by increasing compliance with pool barrier requirements the rate of infant death by drowning could be reduced by up to 41 per cent,” said AlburyCity Director of Plan,ning and Environment Michael Keys. “The State Government is keen to address this issue and is requiring all NSW councils to step up fence inspections to make sure pool owners are compliant with Australian Standards.”

"Many pool fences fail to meet minimum requirements in some aspects. These new measures are designed to boost compliance with those standards and help save kids' lives."

"We're urging pool owners to know their responsibilities when it comes to fencing," he said. "A compliant pool fence is a requirement for all pool owners, and for young children it can mean the difference between life and death."

"Pool fences can lose their integrity over time and it's really important they're re-checked to make sure they're compliant. Even if you don't have kids, friends or neighbours might have small children and a non-compliant fence can lead to a tragedy in a matter of seconds."

To help cover the administrative costs of the inspection program, Council will need to impose a $150 inspection fee on pool owners. This fee applies to the first inspection performed. If a second inspection is required it will incur a further fee of $100. Pensioners will be offered a 50% rebate on the second fee. The fees are payable on inspection and are not annual fees.

Find out more about pool fence and safety regulations.