Every year, over
4,600 drownings and near-drownings occur in home pools. A properly
constructed and installed fence is one way to reduce the risk of
accidental drowning or injury in residential swimming pools. While
nothing can replace parental supervision, a fence that complies with
safety standards is important for the protection of our children.
Most localities require a minimum fence height around a swimming
pool of 4' and have specific regulations concerning gates and fence
materials. It is best to check with your local zoning/permit office
concerning local ordinances regarding height and other requirements.
made of steel, aluminum, and vinyl (PVC) have become very popular
because of their aesthetic and maintenance-free properties. The
steel and aluminum fences generally have vertical pickets 5/8" to 1"
in width. There are generally two or more horizontal members which
hold the vertical pickets in place. When the horizontal members are
45" or less apart, the spacing between the vertical pickets should
be no more than 1 3/4" wide. When the distance between the top and
bottom horizontal members are over 45", the vertical pickets should
be spaced so that a 4" ball cannot be passed between the pickets.
Chain Link Fence is the most
functional and economical. The diamond mesh size of the chain link
fence should not be larger than 1 1/4" to prevent small children
from climbing it. When larger mesh chain link material is used,
slats of wood, plastic, or aluminum should be installed to reduce
the size of the openings to less than 1 3/4". If slats are to be
used, check to make certain that the framework is strong enough to
withstand the additional wind load on the fence.
Gates should be installed to
open outward, away from the pool, and always be equipped with
self-locking latches and self-closing hinges and springs. If the
fence is 4" tall, the latch should be installed on the pool side of
the gate, at least 3" from the top. This would make it necessary to
reach over the top of the gate to open it. If the latch must be
mounted on the outside of the gate, it should be placed higher than
54". If the fence is 5' tall or higher, the latch should be
installed at least 54" from the bottom of the gate. All gates should
have self-latching mechanisms and be able to accept a locking
device, such as a padlock, and be kept locked when not in use.
991 Troon Trace
Winter Springs, Fl 32708