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Swimming Pool Barrier Inspection Program

Program Objective

The objective of the Swimming Pool Barrier Inspection Program is to implement an inspection program that:

  • Effectively meets Council's obligations under the Swimming Pools Act 1992 and Regulation
  • Increases pool safety awareness
  • Reduces infant drowning and near drowning events within the Campbelltown Local Government Area.

Definitions

Certificate of Compliance - in respect of swimming pools means a certificate issued under section 22D of the Swimming Pools Act 1992.
 
Multi-occupancy development  - a building, or buildings, that is, or are, situated on premises that consist of two or more dwellings.
 
Relevant occupation certificate - in respect of a swimming pool, which means an occupation certificate issued under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 that is less than three years old and that authorises the use of the swimming pool.
 
Swimming pool means an excavation, structure or vessel:

  • that is capable of being filled with water to a depth greater than 300 millimetresthat is solely or principally used, or that is designed, manufactured or adapted to be solely or principally used, for the purpose of swimming, wading, paddling or an other human aquatic activity, and includes a spa pool, but does not include a spa bath, anything that is situated within a bathroom or anything declared by the regulations not to be a swimming pool for the purposes of this Act.

 Tourist and Visitor Accommodation - means a building or place that provides temporary or short term accommodation on a commercial basis and includes back packers accommodation, bed and breakfast accommodation, farm stay accommodation and serviced apartments.

Background

A comprehensive review of swimming pool legislation has been undertaken by the NSW Department of Local Government. The change in legislation introducing the Swimming Pool Barrier Inspection Program has been brought about due to the rate of preventable drownings and near drownings in privately owned swimming pools and the high rate of non-compliance of swimming pool barriers in NSW.

The resulting amendments to the Swimming Pools Act 1992 require, in part, that NSW councils develop and implement a locally appropriate swimming pool barrier inspection program in consultation with the community, for privately owned swimming pools.

Inspection Program Requirements

  • As of and from 29 April 2014, Council shall inspect all swimming pools associated with tourist and visitor accommodation and multi-occupancy developments at a maximum of three yearly intervals.
  • Council shall inspect any swimming pool within reasonable time that is subject of a customer, staff or owner request, to ensure the pool barrier is installed in accordance with Swimming Pools Act 1992 requirements.
  • Council shall inspect and take appropriate regulatory action in respect of swimming pools that have been constructed without development consent, or that are installed or are being used in contravention of conditions of development consent or other legislative requirements.
  • As of and from 29 October 2013, Council shall inspect other non-mandatory residential properties that contain swimming pools as part of a proactive program to improve the level of compliance of pool safety barriers and reduce the incidence of infant drownings or near drownings.
  • The proactive inspection program will incorporate a risk based approach whereby unauthorised pools and authorised pools with outstanding final inspections will have high priority.

To make an enquiry regarding inspection times and availability, please contact us on 02 4645 4604.

Inspection Fees

The Swimming Pools Act 1992 provides for an initial inspection fee of $150.00 (which includes the issue of a certificate of compliance for complying pool fences). Should follow up inspections be required for any non-compliance identified a futher $100.00 re-inspection fee is applicable in respect of each additional inspection required.

Once your pool or spa barrier is deemed compliant and any outstanding inspection fees have been paid, a Swimming Pool Barrier Compliance Certificate will be issued without additional charge.

Resourcing

Council will engage appropriate staff to implement the inspection program and associated responsibilities including, but not necessarily limited to:

  • community education and awareness
  • inspection of swimming pools in accordance with the adopted inspection program and its requirements
  • identification of unregistered and unauthorised swimming pools
  • enforcement of the requirements of the Swimming Pools Act 1992 where appropriate
  • issue of certificates of compliance
  • program reporting.

Enforcement

Council aims to achieve compliance through effective education and engagement of pool owners and the community. Council acknowledges the ultimate effectiveness of any pool safety barrier relies upon the awareness of the property owner and their willingness to ensure compliance and ongoing maintenance.

The Swimming Pool Act 1992 does provide mechanisms, such as Notices, Directions and penalty provisions which are used to actively encourage compliance where deemed necessary and appropriate.

Education and Awareness

Pool owner education and awareness is essential in contributing to the success of the inspection program.

An ongoing and complementary community education and awareness program will be delivered through community publications, media releases, web site information, owner self-assessment pool fence checklists and pool safety officer interaction with the public.

The importance of pool barrier maintenance and adult supervision are key messages to be delivered within the program.

The rates of pool barrier compliance are expected to progressively increase as a result of the inspection program and the gradual improvement of the level of community education and awareness.

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