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Pool safety urged for summer

By NATALIE PEUTnataliep@gladstoneobserver.com.au

GLADSTONE swimming pool owners are being urged to ensure their pools are safe this summer.

Eight toddlers drowned in private swimming pools in Queensland in 2002 ? all of these occurred in the summer months.

Gladstone resident and mother Wanda Walker said she believed pool safety was extremely important no matter the age of the children.

'I would never be able to live with myself if something had happened to my child,' she said.

She said although she no longer had really young children, the safety of the older ones was just as important.

'Teenagers tend to act a little more dangerously in the pool than the younger ones,' she said.

'I am always frightened they are going to hurt themselves or hit their head on the edge of the pool.

'I have very strict rules and continue to keep an eye on them.

'We have a first aid sign up, as a reminder in case something happens.'

Gladstone City Council (GCC) warned pool owners to ensure their fence complied with the government's legislation.

GCC senior building officer Mike Rice said it was important that every pool fence met the government's legislation. He said the Gladstone City Council ensured inspections were completed on pool fences in the region.

'We advertise six months before the inspection and, if owners have not got the correct pool fence, they will be required to fix it immediately and, if not fixed, they will be fined,' he said.

'Christmas is supposed to be a time for celebrating. Queenslanders get together over the barbecue and around the pool.

'Let's all make sure no child drowns this Christmas ? or in the New Year.'



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