Pools fail safety test

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - SAM SMALL­BONE

AL­MOST 90 per cent of swim­ming pools in the Dou­glas re­gion in­spected since new laws were in­tro­duced last month have failed the safety test.

The laws, which came into ef­fect on De­cem­ber 1, en­force manda­tory pool safety cer­tifi­cates and in­spec­tions for reg­u­lated, shared and res­i­den­tial pools through­out Queens­land.

Papil­lion Land­scapes pool in­spec­tor Colin Cameron - one of only two li­censed in­spec­tors in the Dou­glas re­gion - has in­spected ap­prox­i­mately 20 pools in the past two months and the bulk of these re­quired re­me­dial ac­tion.

“Af­ter look­ing at some ho­tels, it was ob­vi­ous some need a lot of at­ten­tion but there are oth­ers that have been sen­sa­tion­ally main­tained,” Mr Cameron said.

“I feel for them but we are all in the same boat.

“It is just one of these things that needs to get done, like get­ting a driver’s li­cence.”

Mr Cameron ad­vised pool own­ers to take nec­es­sary steps to com­ply prior to seek­ing a safety cer­tifi­cate.

“There’s a few sim­ple things you can do to make sure your pool com­plies,” he said.

“Make sure there’s no mulch cov­er­ing the base of your fence so it has a con­sis­tent bar­rier of at least 1.2m all the way around.

“En­sure there’s no climbable ob­jects within 30cm of your pool fence.

“Make sure all your com­po­nents such as screws are in good work­ing or­der and re­move any po­ten­tial footholds.

“And re­mem­ber your gate needs to self-close and has to be able to open and close with­out any hin­drance.

“The gate must also be able to sus­tain 33kg of weight bear­ing down on it with­out the latch open­ing.

“There are of­ten very sim­ple so­lu­tions you can im­ple­ment which meet the new re­quire­ments. It doesn’t have to be a costly ex­er­cise, you just need to com­ply with the law.”

King­fisher Fenc­ing man­ager Greg Ni­chol­son said the new pool laws were keep­ing him busy.

“I have had to in­stall fences where a fence didn’t even ex­ist, which is pretty dan­ger­ous,” he said.

“Most of the changes have been to rusted gates or gates not clos­ing prop­erly. A num­ber of older re­sorts have had to update their fences which abide by the old laws.”

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