Table 1

Summary of the Fencing of Swimming Pools Act 1987*

* Adapted from Department of Internal Affairs. Guidelines for Territorial Authorities on the Fencing of Swimming Pools Act 1987. Wellington: Department of Internal Affairs, 1990.29
Who does the act apply to?
• Pool owners must advise their authority that they have a pool.
• Authorities must take all reasonable steps to make sure the act is complied with.
What pools need to be fenced?
• All private swimming pools and spa pools, unless the maximum depth is 400 mm or less, or the walls are 1.2 m or higher, or the pool is indoors.
Where must the fence be situated?
• The fence must only surround the pool and the area immediately around the pool.
• A boundary fence alone is not sufficient. Buildings can form part of the fence.
Can pool owners be exempted from the act?
• Authorities can grant exemptions, if they are satisfied the pool does not significantly increase danger to young children.
What standard of fencing is required?
• The fence must be 1.2 m high.
• Any horizontal supports on the outside of the fence must be at least 900 mm apart.
• Where fences are made of mesh, holes must be less than 50 mm wide (if holes are between 10 mm and 500 mm wide, the fence must be 1.8 m high).
• Gates and doors must be self closing, with a latch.
• Latches must be at least 1.2 m above the ground if on the pool side of the fence, or 1.5 m if on the outside.
• Where a building forms a part of a fence, the requirements for doors may not apply.