When you consider that almost half of drownings in children aged 0-5 occur in backyard swimming pools, it’s little wonder that the Australian government insists a pool fence is mandatory.
Your first step when building a pool fence should be to contact your local council for details on compliance and specifications, ensuring that your fence conforms to the Australian Standard 1926.1.
Depending on when your pool was installed, you may notice several different requirements. This list from renovate.com.au should give you a good idea of what to look for:
A pool fence should completely isolate the pool from the house and a neighbour's yard.
The gap at the bottom of the fence should be no more than 10 cm, preventing a toddler from crawling underneath.
The gate should automatically shut and latch.
Vertical railings should be no more than 10 cm apart, preventing small children from squeezing through.
The horizontal railings should be no less than 90 cm apart, preventing a child from climbing them like a ladder.
A fence should be clear from trees and be kept clear at all times, preventing children from climbing over the fence.
The gate release mechanism should be higher than 1.5 m or located inside the gate at 1.2 m.