Swimming Pools and Spas

Swimming Pools and Spas
Swimming Pools and Spas

Swimming Pools and Spas

Drowning remains the leading cause of preventable death in children under the age of five in Western Australia. A 10-year review of drowning data shows 40 children under five lost their life as a result of drowning between 2003-2013; home pools accounted for approximately 40% of these deaths. 

Children under five are at the highest risk of drowning, making this age group a high priority for drowning prevention initiatives.  This is why the State Government established specific laws in Western Australia that mandate the installation of safety barriers to enclose private swimming and spa pools.

These laws are intended to protect the safety of young children by restricting their access to the area containing the swimming or spa pool.

Pool Barrier

All private swimming pools and spas that contain water more than 300mm deep must have a barrier compliant with Australian Standard AS 1926.1 that restricts access by young children to the swimming and spa pool and its immediate surrounds.

Private swimming or spa pool includes:

  • in-ground and above-ground pools (including inflatable and portable pools);
  • in-ground and above-ground spa pools (but not spa baths that are normally emptied after each use); and
  • Bathing or wading pools.
Rules & Regulations

Rules & Regulations


In Western Australia, the legislative framework that mandates the requirement to provide a barrier to a private swimming and spa pool comprises:

Building Act 2011Building Regulations 2012

Building Commission Public Pools and Spas

Pools that are not considered to be private swimming or spa pools are controlled under the: Health (Aquatic Facilities) Regulations 2007.

More information can be found on the Department of Health Website and Code of Practice:

Aquatic Facilities in WA

Role of the Local Government

Role of the Local Government

Local Government is responsible for issuing building permits for swimming pools and spas and their associated barriers.

The approval process not only ensures that the building and barrier standards are satisfied, but that the structures are registered with the Local Government so that periodic inspections of the installed barrier can occur at least once every four years.

Owners and occupiers are responsible for ensuring that any fence or barrier restricting access to a swimming or spa pool is maintained and operating effectively.

If you do not comply with the Regulations you risk the lives of young children and may face substantial fines.

Barrier Requirements

General Barrier Requirements

The following publications produced by the Building Commission to assist pool and spa owners by thoroughly detailing the rules and regulations for barrier requirements.

Rules for Pools and Spas

Rules for portable pools

Further Information

Further Information

Please note the Shire of Irwin is currently contracting the City of Greater Geraldton to carry out inspections on our behalf. 

If you have any further queries or would like to arrange a pool or spa inspection, please contact the Regulatory Service Department on  9927 0000

Other useful websites include:

Royal Life Saving WA

Royal Life Saving Australia – Keep Watch

Royal Life Saving Australia - Swim and Survive