Swimming Pools and Spas

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New safety standards were introduced in 2019 to improve pool and spa barrier safety. 

The laws introduced by the Victorian Government mean pool and spa owners must:

Refer to your registration letter for your previous compliance date. Learn more

Obtain pool/spa registration information statement
(Information for pool/spa barrier inspector)

Complete the below form to receive an automated response (approximately 5 mins) straight to your email address.

The response will provide information suitable for your pool inspector to complete the inspection and provide the certification (Form 23) necessary to submit to Council.

Complete the Pool and Spa Registration Statement

Important information about pool and spa safety, operation and maintenance

A pool or spa safety barrier does not replace the need for constant adult supervision of children around water.  

 Pool barrier maintenance

The owner of the land on which a swimming pool or spa is located must take all reasonable steps to ensure that a barrier restricting access to the swimming pool or spa area is properly maintained at all times. Penalty: over $8000

Swimming pool and spa barrier operation

An occupier of the land on which a swimming pool or spa is located must take all reasonable steps to ensure that a barrier restricting access to the swimming pool or spa area is operating effectively and safely.

Swimming pool and spa barrier gate must remain closed

An occupier of the land on which a swimming pool or spa is located must take all reasonable steps to ensure that any gate or door forming part of a barrier restricting access to the swimming pool or spa area remains closed except when a person is entering or leaving the part of the land on which the swimming pool or spa is located. Penalty: over $8000.

A person who opens a gate or door forming part of a barrier restricting access to the swimming pool or spa area must ensure that the gate or door is closed immediately after entering or leaving the part of the land on which the swimming pool or spa is located. Penalty: over $8000.

Further information

Penalties are subject to change with Victorian Building Authority and State legislation. 

For more information about the new Victorian Government legislation, visit the Victorian Building Authority website page. 

The Shire does not offer a pool and spa inspection and certification service. It is not affiliated with any providers of this service and does not endorse or support any providers of this service.

The Shire is tasked by the State Government to ensure all affected property owners comply with the new regulations and penalties will apply for non-compliance.


Do I need a safety barrier?

Permanent safety barriers are required for all permanent or relocatable pools and spas capable of containing a depth of water greater than 300mm, including:

  • in-ground swimming pools
  • hot tubs and Jacuzzis
  • indoor swimming pools
  • above-ground swimming pools
  • spas
  • inflatable and relocatable pools

Note: A lockable lid is not a compliant safety barrier.

Do I need a building permit to install a safety barrier?

A building permit is required to install or alter a swimming pool and spa safety barrier. For more information see Building Permits

How can I check if my safety barrier is compliant?

While there will be stricter laws on managing swimming pool and spa compliance, the requirement to have safety barriers hasn’t changed. 

You can engage a private building surveyor to do an inspection of the existing permanent safety barrier and provide a report on the level of compliance achieved.

Regulations that apply to permanent safety barriers for existing swimming pools and spas can vary depending on the year the pool or spa was built.

For information on the regulations that apply to swimming pools or spas built prior to 8 April 1991, see Swimming Pools and Spas Prior to 1991(PDF, 412KB).

For information on the regulations that apply to swimming pools or spas built after 8 April 1991 and 30 April 2010, see Swimming Pools and Spas(PDF, 529KB).

For information on the regulations that apply to swimming pools or spas built after 1 May 2010, see Swimming Pools and Spas(PDF, 748KB).

For information on current swimming pool and spa safety barrier requirements, see the Victorian Building Authority's practice note Swimming Pool & Spa Safety(PDF, 3MB) . Please note this practice note is currently under review.  

Request a Certificate of Compliance Form 23 - Extension of Time

If the owner of a registered swimming pool/spa is having difficultly arranging an inspection of a safety barrier they are able to apply for an extension of time to the lodgement due date previously nominated by council. If the due date extension application is successful, the extension of time will likely be 60 days so it is important to continue to work towards arranging the appropriate safety barrier inspection as soon as possible.

For the extension of time application to be considered you will need to provide some specific information:

  • Owners details
  • Property details
  • Your application number
  • Reason for request
  • You will also need to confirm that you have recently completed a safety barrier self-assessment and are comfortable that your safety barrier complies and is well maintained.

Request for Extension of Time for Lodgement of Certificate of Pool and Spa Barrier

Safety barrier maintenance

Swimming pool and spa owners have legal obligations to maintain their safety barriers at all times. Non-compliance, for any reason, can increase the risk of drowning and lead to prosecution.

For more information on swimming pool and spa safety barriers, see the Victorian Building Authority's information on swimming pools.

What if I am building a New Swimming Pool or Spa?

A Building Permit from a Private Building Surveyor is required to install a new swimming pool or spa.

When your pool or spa has been completed, your Private Building Surveyor will issue a Final Certificate and a Certificate of Compliance.

Within 30 days, the owner must

  1. Register their swimming pool or spa with Council 
  2. Submit their Certificate of Compliance

 

Backwash from swimming pools

The water discharged when backwashing the sand filter on a chlorinated or salt-treated swimming pool must not impact or flow onto any other property.

Water from a swimming pool backwash must be either:

  • Treated via a solid settling tank or cartridge filter with the water recycled back into the pool

OR

OR

  • Discharged into the sewerage system in accordance with South East Water requirements. Written approval MUST be obtained from South East Water prior to connecting any drainage works into the sewer system. Please note that pool backwash water is not permitted to discharge to a pressure sewer. Discharge is only permitted to a gravity fed sewer subject to approval

OR

  • Connected to the Shire’s storm water network ONLY if it is treated to the following standard:

    - Total Residual Chlorine <0.1 parts per million, Suspended Solids < 10 parts per million

    - Chlorine levels can be tested using a standard pool testing kit. Specialist advice can also be obtained from a pool maintenance contractor

    - All plumbing works must be undertaken by a registered plumber who must provide you with a Victorian Building Authority Certificate of Compliance for any works undertaken.

More information

South East Water
Victorian Building Authority