NSW government has warned parents that if their inflatable pools are filled with more than 30cm water it must be fenced like a regular pool or they may face a fine of up to $500.

Parental supervision around water at all times is still always going to be your best defence against tragedy. Also, draining inflatable pools when not in use is a must.

“That’s it, 30 centimetres. Every pool capable of holding that much water does require fencing,” Michael Morris from the Samuel Morris Foundation said.

“This is an ongoing problem of the point of sale making people aware of the risks of the products that they’re buying,” he said

“It is difficult because they’re bought and sold and no one knows where they go,” Robert Guthrie from the Pool and Spa Association said.

The government says it is assessing the report and is: “committed to reducing the number of drowning deaths in backyard pools. Any child drowning is one too many.”

“Supervision is paramount. Children under five should be within arms length at all times they’re in a swimming pool,” Mr Guthrie said.

NSW Fencing requirements state:  

Swimming pool owners must ensure their pools comply with fencing laws. Pools able to be filled to a depth of 300mm or more must be surrounded by a safety barrier separating the swimming pool from any residential building or place adjoining the premises.

Fences surrounding pools must be designed, constructed, installed and maintained to meet Australian standards for swimming pools.

Victoria Pool Fencing Laws

All swimming pools and spas on residential properties in Victoria with a depth greater than 30cm (300mm) are required to be surrounded by a safety barrier (e.g. a pool fence).

QLD Pool Fencing Laws
All swimming pools over 300mm must be enclosed by an approved barrier that meets with state government pool safety legislation under chapter 8 of the Building Act 1975.

A barrier can include:
•fencing for the pool
•walls of a building enclosing the pool
•another form of barrier mentioned or provided for in the pool safety standard

Approved barriers are only one part of swimming pool safety.

WA Pool Fencing Laws
There are varying requirements for swimming pool/spa safety barriers depending on the age of the swimming pool/spa and in some instances upgrading if a property inclusive of a swimming pool/spa is sold.

Prior to the construction of a swimming pool or spa approval must be sought and approval obtained by way of a Building Permit.

SA Pool Fencing Laws

Above-ground or inflatable pools and ‘portable’ spa pools

If the swimming pool or spa pool has a filtration system you will need to:
•get approval from your local council
•ensure safety features are in place.

The sides of an above-ground pool can be a suitable safety barrier if :
•they are non-climbable and are at least 1.2 metres high
•a barrier is placed around the ladder (even if it is removable)
•a barrier is placed around anything else that can be climbed on.

Check with your local council if you are unsure of regulations.

Share your thoughts below.

Image via Getty

  • Water safety is so very important.


  • And supervise. Always supervise. You can control what goes on in your backyard, but not those jumping over fences etc. at the sight of your pool.


  • Important to take these laws serious, safety above all !


  • Our inflatable pool was always emptied after use because I always prefer to have fresh water before each use. The pool was never put out unless my husband or myself were sitting in it with them. I know it’s a bit of an overkill but I was always the nervous type when it came to my boys


  • our baby’s safety comes before anything


  • Really don’t like inflatable pools – they just don’t seem safe to me


  • Makes sense to me… Keep our kids safe!


  • it should be the same law for all states.


  • whatever happened to common sense?? Honestly how did the bloody human race survive before all these laws and restrictions> grrrrr


  • yeah have to take these things seriously. research


  • Glad the rulings are in but it would be very hard to enforce them for everyone. My older children use to use the baby bath outside filled with more then 30 cm of water. so under this ruling it would had meant i would had to fence it off. Yes emptied after they were finished with it as one time it was that hot there were bees using it for the moisture.
    My younger children use their oldest brother’s bath yes with an adult there. That is one big deep bath they can swim in it. So this would have to be fenced under the ruling, unless they use a stool to get in and then they could not turn on the taps.


  • I think it’s very important. Not everyone will follow it though. We had strict regulations we had to follow for our pool fence. We were happy to oblidge


  • It’s scary how quickly things can go wrong with children and water.


  • A very important issue to keep at he forefront of people’s minds.


  • A very important campaign! Better safe than sorry!


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