Can I add an above-ground swimming pool to my strata titled backyard? – Donna, QLD
A lock has been put on the pool gate and the only person who has the remote is the on site manager. They have changed the pool times to 7.30 am to 7.30 pm by committee vote but it still states on our bylaws 6 am to 10 pm. I have 2 questions…
1. If someone is swimming or drying themselves and the gate is locked they have no way of getting out of the pool, fences are to high and to dangerous. If they slip and fall into the pool and no one can help them, is this a safety issue?
2. Due to the above I’m thinking of putting a above ground exercise pool, (fast lane pool) in my back yard, no one will be able to see it and it is not a cemented fixture. Is this ok as it is in my backyard?
The pool gate can be locked, however all occupants and owners have the right to access the pool. If someone is inside the pool compound, the gate should allow entry without restriction. You could discuss the matter with your local Council for their requirements and also the QBCC.
As per Queensland state regulations, fences and barriers are mandatory safety measures for pools and all gates must be kept locked when the pool is not in use. However there must be legible warning notices and signages placed around the pool to ensure pool users are aware of the risks associated with the pool’s structures. It is also important to have clear signages around the pool with close timings, emergency contact information and directions for the use of first-aid.
In relation to the pool operating hours, these are usually specified in the by-laws. The timings can only be changed by the owners resolution at a general meeting, and not by a committee resolution (although the committee may make house rules from time to time if permitted under your by-laws). You can refer to your by-laws for clarity and check with your body corporate manager.
Before installing a pool in your lot, you will need to submit an application to the body corporate for the improvement to your lot and seek their approval. In addition, you will need to liaise with the local council and also the QBCC for their requirements regarding safety. To know more about Queensland’s laws regarding pool requirements, click here.
Also, make sure to register your pool, have the necessary certifications, conduct timely inspections and pay inspection and certification related fees on time. You must remember to reapply for certification so that it does not lapse.