Inflatable pools could be ?illegal

By KELLI DOWNEYkelli@gladstoneobserver.com.au

SAFETY concerns have arisen over the increasing number of 'illegal' inflatable pools in Gladstone backyards.

Gladstone City Council has warned fines will now be issued for those failing to obtain council approval and properly fence these types of pools.

The warning follows an increase in complaints and inquiries regarding portable, inflatable pools in recent weeks.

Under Queensland Pool Fencing Standards inflatable pools must be fenced if they can be filled with more than 450mm of water and to a volume of more than 2000 litres.

Fencing requirements also apply to pools that have a filtration system.

Gladstone City Council building certifier Sally McKee said there was a huge safety issue regarding the purchase of some inflatable pools, many which did not mention council approval being needed.

Ms McKee said there were heaps of people in Gladstone with these pools in their backyards. She said these types of pools were available from places such as Big W and K Mart.

"We are getting complaints from neighbours concerned over the safety of children because of these unfenced pools,'' Ms McKee said.

"We got a brochure and it is terrible because there is not one mention of council approval or fencing requirements.''

Council has recently undertaken numerous inspections of inflatable pools resulting in the issuing of warnings.

Pool owners were asked to empty the pool immediately. A majority of people adhered to requests, Ms McKee said. However she said those failing to do so would be hit with a $575 on-the-spot fine.

"Many people thought they were buying a cheap pool,'' she said.

"But what they don't realise is they must lodge and application for approval which costs $165 and then build a fence which is extra money.

"We are also encouraging people that if they do see neighbours with unfenced pools to call council.



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