Swimming pools and spas

NSW Swimming Pool Register

The owner of the premises where a swimming pool and/or spa is situated must ensure it is entered on the NSW Government Swimming Pool Register.

The premises must also have an occupation certificate less than three years old authorising the use of the swimming pool or a certificate of compliance.

A certificate of compliance can be obtained through council. To organise an inspection, complete a swimming pool inspection form (fees apply). 

You may choose to engage a private certification service. See the NSW Government Swimming Pool Register eand the Building Professionals Board for more information on private certification and associated costs.

Do I have to fence my pool?

Yes. The property owner must ensure that their swimming pool is surrounded by a complying child-resistant pool safety barrier in a good state of repair.

Prefabricated and inflatable pools capable of being filled with water to a depth 300mm or more may also require child-resistant barriers.

Depending on when your pool was built, there are different standards that will apply to your pool

Date Construction commenced Applicable Standard

Prior to 1 August 1990


1 August 1990 to 31 August 2008


1 September 2008 to 30 April 2013 


1 May 2013 to date


1 May 2020 (proposed)

AS1926-2019 (estimated name)

Some of these standards include:

  • minimum height 1200mm surrounding the swimming pool
  • minimum height of 1800mm along a boundary. (An alternative boundary fence height of 1200 mm applies for pools under AS 1926-1986)
  • minimum 900mm separation between the upper and lower horizontal members to maintain non-climbable zone
  • non-climbable zone extents from the barrier 300mm into pool area and a minimum of 900mm outside pool area
  • maximum 100mm gap under the fence
  • maximum 100mm gap in vertical members including any flex in material
  • no foot holds or hand holds greater than 10 mm in the fence itself to assist climbing

Pool gates must:

  • be self-closing and self-latching from any angle and must be closed at all times
  • open outwards from the pool area
  • not be double gates
  • have a latch release mechanism that is 1.5-metres above the ground except where a shield is used. The shield makes it necessary to reach over the gate to release the mechanism
  • be no wider than 1-metre to minimise the possibility of the weight of the gate causing the gate to drop.

Selling or leasing a property with a pool

Properties with a pool or spa must have a valid pool certificate of compliance (pdf) or final occupation certificate (valid for three years). 

The certificate must be attached to the sale contract or tenancy agreement before promoting your property for sale or lease.

Compulsory Inspection for tourist accommodation

Premises with a swimming pool and/or spa on which there is tourist and visitor accommodation, or more than two dwellings, or as defined in Council's approved mandatory inspection program must be inspected every three years unless there is a valid certificate of compliance or a relevant occupation certificate in force.

Ballina Shire Council Pool Inspectors are the only inspectors, by law, who can inspect a mandatory swimming pool barrier.

Spa pools

Spa pools are also covered by the legislation and should be separated by a child-resistant pool safety barrier in accordance with relevant Australian Standard.

Alternatively, a spa may be covered and secured by a lockable child-safe structure (such as a door, lid, grille or mesh).

Resuscitation charts

All pools must have a Resuscitation Chart/Warning Notice prominently displayed in the immediate vicinity of the pool. It is recommended that resuscitation charts purchased prior to 1 September 2019 be replaced as these charts may contain obsolete information.

The Resuscitation sign:

  • must be legible from a distance of at least three metres
  • must be maintained in a clearly legible condition.

Resuscitation and/or warning signs can be purchased from most pool supply shops and council.

Swimming pool checklist

You are also strongly encouraged to undertake your own self-assessment via the NSW Government pool safety checklists.

  • Ensure all of the pool safety barriers are maintained and operating e.g. check gates are self-closing and self-latching from any angle.
  • Make sure pool gates are kept closed at all times.
  • Make sure there are no objects or trees near the pool barrier that would assist allow a small child to climb.
  • Check that you have a current resuscitation chart visible in the pool area
  • Make sure you’ve discussed with your family what to do in the event that you need to use it. Use the of inspect your own pool.
  • Actively Supervise children when using the swimming pool.




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Postal Address

The General Manager
Ballina Shire Council
PO Box 450
Ballina NSW 2478

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40 Cherry Street
Ballina NSW 2478


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