Call to ban pools a step too far, with child safety the key
THERE'S nothing Queenslanders like more than to cool off in their own pool, but it comes at a cost, with data showing swimming pools account for the majority of child drowning deaths.
And it's these statistics that prompted blogger Jo Abi to call for for a ban on backyard swimming pools, saying safety measures were ineffective despite Australia having the highest pool ownership per capita in the world
Poolwerx Gladstone manager Kirsty Horner disagreed and believed pools were there to be enjoyed safely.
"As long as there is safety in place like having a pool fence and making sure people are educated, then there shouldn't be a problem," she said.
Poolwerx recently released survey results showing that only one third of pool owners were confident they could perform CPR in an emergency situation.
Up to 43 per cent didn't properly display a CPR chart and 20 per cent confessed they didn't have their pool gate regularly inspected.
These numbers drive home figures the Royal Life Saving Society Australia released last year illustrating that 81 per cent of children drowning occurred when they had fallen into water.
Ms Horner said taking the right precautions could prevent these drownings.
"Supervision can prevent these deaths. There shouldn't be kids falling into water or swimming without adult supervision," she said.
"Education is lacking. People need to have a pool fence, it needs to be locked at all times and also not many people know how to adequately perform CPR."
Before investing in a pool Ms Horner said that research was the first step.
"Make sure you research safety laws, have your pool fence up to standard and checked regularly by a pool inspector, learn to perform CPR and to have a first aid qualification," she said.
"As long as precautions and education are there and as long as everyone is safe and happy, then we're happy."
Since 2008 Gladstone Regional Council has received 684 applications for pools and spas.
- 31 children aged 0-4 drowned last year.
- 61% of children drowning aged 0-4 occurred in a swimming pool
- Falls into water account for 81% of children drowning aged 0-4
- 9 children aged 5-14 drowned last year
- 56% of children drowning aged 5-14 occurred in a swimming pool