The Building Regulations 2012 (the Regulations) requires all private swimming and spa pools that contain water that is more than 300mm deep to have a compliant safety barrier installed that restricts access by young children to the pool and its immediate surrounds.
The requirements for safety barriers have changed over time. In Western Australia, there are two sets of safety barrier requirements depending on when the private swimming pool was installed or when plans for the installation of the pool were submitted to the permit authority for approval:
- Post 1 May 2016; and
- Pre 1 May 2016
- for new private swimming pools (that is post 1 May 2016) the safety barrier requirements are those of the Building Code of Australia (BCA) 2016. The BCA references AS 1926.1:2012 (Safety barriers for swimming pools) and AS 1926.2:2007 (Location of safety barriers for swimming pools) incorporating amendments 1 and 2; and
- existing private swimming pools (that is pre 1 May 2016) can continue to comply with their existing requirements under the Regulations or alternatively comply with the new requirements (that is the BCA).
The Building Commission has produced the following publications to assist swimming pool and spa owners to understand the barrier requirements for swimming and spa pools:
- Rules for pools and spas – May 2016
- Thinking of installing a swimming pool or spa? (options for obtaining building approval)
- Industry Bulletin 64 – Changes to swimming pool barrier laws
- Industry Bulletin 67 – Building Amendment Regulations (No. 2) 2016 (swimming pool barriers)
- Industry Bulletin 72 – Notice of completion - inspections and tests