Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Fence Regulations For Outdoor Pools

Swimming pool fencing makes your pool safer.

Adding a pool safety fence around your outdoor swimming pool not only can add to the quality of your landscape, but in some communities pool fence regulations may make it a mandatory addition. It's important that children not wander into the pool area and inadvertently fall into the swimming pool. Check with your local municipality to find its specific pool fence regulations before buying and installing an outdoor pool fence. Does this Spark an idea?


The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that nearly 300 children drown in a swimming pool annually. The majority of these are children between the ages of 1 and 3 who somehow wander into their own family's pool or that of a close relative. While no unified code is in place, the 2006 International Building Code Pool Barrier Requirement is a good example for communities to follow.


Pool safety fence functions as a barrier to stop children from accessing your swimming pool when adult supervision is not present. You typically add outdoor pool fence when you build your pool, but it is possible to add it around established pools and their decks, even pools with concrete decking. While pool safety fences are typically a permanent fixture, it is possible to find flexible safety fences that you remove when the pool is in use. If you have an above ground pool, you can add protective fencing around its deck. You must also create a barrier to the stairs as well.


Pool safety fence material is usually 4 feet high at the minimum. Upright parallel bars spaced no wider than 4 inches apart are one type. Chain link no larger than 2 1/4 inches is another option. Solid walls should have no foothold in them that might allow a child to climb them to gain access to the pool. Set all pool safety fence material close to the ground. If the wall of the house is one wall of the pool fence, install safety alarms on the door to the pool area.


While gates of the same material as the fence are acceptable, there should be minimal spacing between the gate post and gate so that little hands can't unlatch the gate. Pool gates should open away from the pool area and, if possible, have an alarm. Place latches as high as possible on the gate, at least 3 inches from the top. The gate's release mechanism should be on the pool side.


Pool safety fence is only one layer of protection. Homeowners should also have a number of other warning and safety systems in place such as door and gate alarms and retractable pool covers.

Tags: pool fence, safety fence, pool area, fence material, fence regulations, outdoor pool