Private swimming pools under inspection
  • Tuesday 17 June 2008

A Sunshine Coast Regional Council swimming pool inspection campaign will kick off at the end of this month to help keep our children safe this summer.

The campaign, which was approved by Council’s Strategy and Planning Committee last week and expected to be endorsed by the full Council at the Ordinary Meeting of Council this Thursday, will target the former Noosa Council area as part of a regular inspection program.

Committee member and Division 11 Councillor, Russell Green, said the program aimed to reduce the risk of young children drowning in swimming pools that are unfenced or not properly fenced.

As a former Regional Director for Royal Life Saving Queensland, the primary organisation committed to water safety, swimming and lifesaving education in Australia, Cr Green said he well aware of the high statistics when it came to drownings in Australia.

“Drowning is the second most common cause of accidental death among children under the age of 14,” Cr Green said.

“In Queensland, a child under the age of five drowns in a swimming pool every six weeks, and around 100 more are taken to hospital as a result of near drownings – we don’t want this region to contribute to these alarming statistics.

“Through inspection programs such as these, we hope to ensure all pool owners make their pool safe by having proper fencing to prevent children from having accidents – if this initiative saves just one young life, it will be worth it.

“We also hope that, through these kinds of programs, we can raise awareness and reinforce changing community attitudes and expectations in relation to this issue.”

Pool fencing rules are made by the State Government, however local Councils are responsible for making sure all private pool owners follow these regulations.

Under the program, council staff will inspect selected private pools throughout Peregian Beach, Noosa Heads, Pomona, Pinbarren and Kin Kin to ensure fencing around pools complies with the Building Act 1975.

Council staff will specifically be looking to ensure pools comply with fencing standards and that those fences are kept in good condition.

They will also encourage pool owners to ensure:

  • pool access can’t be gained through doors or windows
  • pools display Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation signs
  • spas are properly fenced in the same way as swimming pools
  • all objects outside the pool fence are removed to prevent children gaining access

The program is expected to be held from Monday 14 July to Wednesday 10 October.