Are you planning on adding a pool to your home, or already have one ready to enjoy? Then you might be wondering if you need to install a pool fence for safety reasons or to stay in compliance with your local regulations.
Keep reading to learn more about the importance of installing a fence around your pool and the different types of requirements you need to consider.
Fences for Inground Pools
If you are planning on adding an inground pool to your home, or already own one, then it is important that you are aware of the different requirements needed to remain in compliance. First, the deck of the pool should be coated with a non-abrasive, slip resistance material. This can help your family and guests from slipping and falling. The deck should also wrap around the entire pool and be flush with the pool wall.
If your pool is at least 18 inches deep then you will be required to have a fence installed around it. Different states have specific requirements for the measurements of the fence. Be sure to determine what type of regulations your local government might have. When planning your fence you need to have it at least four feet high to keep a small child or pet from climbing over the top. You can also choose from some of the best fence material, such as, cast iron, mesh or wood fencing, depending on what your personal style is.
Add a gate to the fence so you have a point of entry, with a self-closing hinge and a self-latching clasp that is high enough for adults only to reach, roughly 54 inches from the floor. If your home has any doors that allow direct access to the pool area then you should install a fence and gate separating the pool and the access door. An alarm on the door will help notify you if the door has been opened so you can investigate if needed.
Before installing your pool fence, you should consult your local building inspector. The inspector will verify where to install your fence, the number of gates needed, and if the fence meets the local safety codes. If you don’t consult them first, you may find that your fence is not up to code. This can lead to having to install a new one, this can become costly and time-consuming. Of course just because you have installed a fence for your pool doesn’t mean that you can let your guard down there are other ways you can ensure that everyone enjoys their time by the pool safely.
Additional Safety Steps
Aside from having a fence to protect children and pets from falling into the pool, you should also install an anti-entrapment guard over the pools drain pipes. These drain pipes are meant to suck in leaves and other debris but can also have a strong enough suction to pull smaller children into them and trap them underneath the water. In general, children should stay clear of the drain pipes. Yet, in the event of an accident, the anti-entrapment guard will ensure that they can get loose from the suction of the drain.
If you have children then the best way to ensure their safety around yours or someone else’s swimming pool is by having them take swimming lessons. Not only will they learn how to swim they will also learn how to recover from a life-threatening situation. For those children who haven’t had swim lessons, or aren’t strong swimmers, should wear a Coast Guard-approved life jacket. Avoid allowing your children to only use tubes or floaties as these devices can be unreliable and may give them a false sense of security. No matter how well your children swim you should never leave them unattended while swimming in the pool. Accidents can happen and there should always be a capable adult in charge. Parents should also know how to swim so they can save a child who may be drowning.
Create Pool Rules
When you own a pool it is important that you are responsible for the safety of your family and guests. Taking the steps to install a fence and anti-entrapment guard are great first steps, and teaching your children how to swim. However, accidents can still happen in the best of circumstances so you should set some ground rules and expectations for those who plan on enjoying the water.
There should be an expectation that nobody accesses the pool without getting permission to do so. There should also be no rough-housing such as, pushing or wrestling, and no running on the pool deck to avoid slipping and falling. Nobody should be allowed to dive headfirst into the pool, this can cause head and neck injuries and may even lead to paralysis. If you are having adult guests over then they should not enter the pool if they are intoxicated. When you are impaired, you aren’t able to make good decisions and accidents are likely to happen.
Learn More About the Importance of Installing a Pool Fence Today!
When you are planning on having a pool installed or already own one, it is important to have a pool fence installed to protect your children and pets. Speak with your local building inspector before getting started so you will ensure the type of fence and placement are following your local safety codes. When you have all these safety measures in place, grab your bathing suit and towel and have some fun! For more pool safety tips and information, be sure to visit our website daily!