Brisbane residents are encouraged to prioritise pool safety this summer as new figures reveal the most common safety issues around backyard pools.
Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said faulty gates, fence maintenance and outdated CPR signs were the most common pool safety risks found in Brisbane backyards.
“Everyone has a role to play when it comes to pool and water safety,” Cr Schrinner said.
“As the city heats up this summer, it’s only normal for residents to jump in a backyard pool with their families and friends.
Unfortunately, we’ve seen an increase in child and adult drownings across the country in recent years, so I’m asking Brisbane residents to stay vigilant this summer.”
“This year Council inspected more than 540 backyard pools to ensure they comply the current safety standards as set out under Queensland law.”
The 2022 National Drowning Report identified the temporary closure of aquatic facilities and swim schools during the worst of the COVID pandemic is likely to impact Australians for years to come, with children missing long periods of swimming and water safety education.
Former Olympic Swimming Coach and water safety campaigner Laurie Lawrence said learning to swim is crucial to help curb the recent raise in drowning deaths.
“Summertime is two things, apart from getting sunburnt noses – it’s drowning season and a time when kids improve the most in and around water because they are exposed to water more often,” he said.
“During the pandemic there were only so many people you could allow in the pool (during lessons), and we saw drowning statistics go up considerably which is a particular concern in the under 5 age group.
I’ve seen the numbers in my swim schools starting to pick up again and with summer, the numbers are starting to pick up even more.
My recommendation is if you want your kids to swim you’ve got to take them to the water and supervise them, take your kids to the fantastic Council facilities, and give them the opportunity to explore and play.
Fence your pool, supervise your kids, and make sure you get them swimming lessons, because swimming lessons save lives.”
Residents wanting a free pool safety inspection can contact Council on 3403 8888.
Five most common pool safety risks:
- Faulty gate latches/gates not self-closing
- Objects encroaching the non-climbable zone (furniture, pots, toys etc.);
- Maintenance of fencing (keeping fencing in sound and working condition);
- Changing fencing without gaining approval; and
- Outdated CPR signs.